Can you bring pepper spray on a plane? In terms of self-defense, pepper spray and mace are frequently used. But if you’re not aware of the TSA/FAA laws and the restrictions of each airline, carrying these items on an aircraft can be troublesome.
Everything you need to know about taking pepper spray and mace on an aircraft will be explained in detail below.
Can You Bring Pepper Spray On A Plane?
The container must be fitted with a safety mechanism to prevent unintentional discharge and contain no more than 2% by mass of tear gas in order to be allowed to travel in checked baggage on some flights (CS or CN). Any airline prohibits passengers from bringing pepper spray on board as a carry-on item.
One Container (4 Fluid Ounces)
It’s important to keep your container under 4 ounces or 118 ml (which is different from the liquids rule). Keep in mind that pepper spray is not permitted to be kept in your purse or on your keychain when passing through security.
Keep in mind that this size requirement is based on the container’s size, not the volume of liquid within. A 8 ounce bottle that is just 40% filled (less than four ounces of “fluid”) would be in violation of TSA regulations.
Pepper spray vials of less than four fluid ounces may readily be found on Amazon.
In terms of purchasing pepper spray, bursts and range are likely to be reduced as a result of this new limit.
As a result, you won’t be able to fire as many shots and may not have as much of a shooting range. That’s why if you’re concerned about either of those things, you may want to consider bringing pepper spray with you if it’s practicable.
Mechanism Of Protection
Pepper spray should include a safety system to prevent inadvertent discharge.
An unwitting TSA employee rummaging through your luggage might be in for a nasty surprise. Safety mechanisms are almost usually included with certain models, so this shouldn’t be an issue if you pick the proper one.
That recessed button can’t be the only safety feature; an additional device, such as a cap that pops up, is required by the FAA and the legislation. To guarantee that your pepper spray is allowed on the plane, make sure that the trigger has a cover or cap.
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As long as you check for phrases like “safety switch” in the description, you should be OK.
For further protection, you may want to purchase a case or sheath for it. A safety mechanism may not be necessary, but it might provide additional protection in the event of an unintentional discharge.
Tear Gas (2% Tear Gas)
One of the most important restrictions to keep in mind is the requirement that the spray not include more than 2% of its mass in tear gas. You will not be able to check your mace or pepper spray if it weighs more than this.
Both the TSA and the FAA specifically specify that this 2% restriction applies to CS and CN. However, Oleoresin capsicum is not mentioned (OC).Both the TSA and the FAA specifically specify that this 2% restriction applies to CS and CN. However, Oleoresin capsicum is not mentioned (OC).
The percentage should be indicated on the label of any decent mace or pepper spray maker, and you can check it out to see what it is.
Why Is It Illegal To Carry Pepper Spray On Planes?
As a weapon, pepper spray and mace may be used for both defense and offense. Terrorists might use them to harm or entrap members of the crew or passengers. In reality, hijackers used mace in the 9/11 attacks.
TSA agents sometimes fail to notice pepper spray in a passenger’s carry-on and it is mistakenly sprayed in the aircraft cabin, such as on United Flight 1061 to Newark, NJ.
As a result, passengers had to deal with breathing difficulties and a lot of coughing, which was not acceptable in the period of covid.
No wonder defensive sprays were banned from the cabin of an airplane.
The flammability may also be a problem. Even when used alone, pepper spray does not ignite when exposed to air. When utilized in an aerosol form, the propellants make it very combustible.
Pepper Spray Vs. Mace
Because the TSA limits some types of chemicals, you should be aware of the variations in self-defense spray canisters.
Among the most common ingredients found in pepper spray and mace canisters are the following:
- Acetophenone-2-chloride (CN),
- the malonitrile of o-chlorobenzylidene (CS)
- oil of cayenne (OC)
Mace and pepper spray are similar, however they are not interchangeable terms. People who are resistant to mace, such as those who are high on drugs or alcohol, may need to be subdued with pepper spray, which is a more potent inflammatory agent.
Oleoresin capsicum is commonly used in pepper spray (OC). Toxic 2-Chloroacetophenone (CN) is more likely to be used by Mace than any of the other three ingredients. You should keep an eye out for packages containing a blend of these medications for added efficacy.
Pepper spray and mace are permitted as long as you adhere to the TSA’s rules. Additionally, as you can see from the aforementioned regulations, pepper spray containing the CN or CS beyond 2% is prohibited.
Is It Legal To Use Pepper Spray In Every State?
Whether or whether pepper spray is allowed in another state may be a question that you want to ask yourself before going through airport security.
The good news is that pepper spray is permitted in almost every state, or there are no restrictions prohibiting use. However, there are state-imposed limits on the use of pepper spray.
It’s plain sense to keep it out of the hands of criminals, for example. However, there are certain limitations on taking it to school or sending it over the mail in other ways. There may also be restrictions on weight and/or age.
As a result, make careful to verify your state’s regulations on the use of pepper spray.
Pepper Spray Policies On Airlines
You may get inconsistent information concerning pepper spray regulations from major airlines such as United (American), Delta (Delta), and Southwest (Swift). Even while TSA explicitly states that pepper spray can be carried in checked luggage or as a carry-on, certain airlines may tell you otherwise.
Following TSA guidelines frequently leads airlines to reverse their position and allow pepper spray on board. Pepper spray can be used on planes, but it’s probable you’ll encounter an airline agent who insists it isn’t authorized, which is backed up by their terms and conditions.
It’s for this reason that you may want to keep a copy of the TSA webpage handy (on your phone or printed out) in case an agent asks for it.
This type of bear spray, like mace and pepper spray, depends on a chemical compound known as capsaicin. One of the most important distinctions between bear spray and mace and pepper spray is that bear spray shoots out an expanding cloud of spray, whereas mace and pepper spray normally fire out only a narrow stream that must be pointed towards the face (which is not ideal for deterring bears).
Unfortunately, bear spray cannot be transported in your checked or carry-on luggage.
You may be possible to rent bear spray from a national park or similar facility if you’re flying into bear area for hiking or other outdoor activities, so I recommend checking with visitor centers before you go.
Last But Not Least
There are a few things to bear in mind while bringing pepper spray on an aircraft. First and foremost, you cannot carry pepper spray into the cabin at any time.
When it comes to container size, you must keep it at four fluid ounces, ensure that the spray has an acceptable safety mechanism, and adhere to the two percent restriction.
Third, you must be prepared for airlines to have rules that are inconsistent with those of the Transportation Security Administration.