United charged with $1.3 million penalty for hazardous material violation

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BURLINGTON, Mass. — The Federal Aviation Administration proposed a $1.3 million civil fine on United Airlines for allegedly violating Hazardous Materials Regulations.

During inspections in four cities including Denver, the FAA found 120 cases where the airline failed to follow regulations, according to a statement from FAA representative Ian Gregor.

A majority of the violations involved failure to inform the pilot of accurate information about hazardous materials on board, Gregor said. This information included location of the materials on the aircraft; the materials’ type, quantity, weight, and status of packages.

“Knowing exactly what’s on board the aircraft and where it’s located provides the crew with a better chance of safely handling an emergency,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta.

Additionally, in two separate instances, United accepted hazardous materials for air transportation aboard the aircraft.

Some hazardous materials included the following:

  •  lithium metal batteries
  • dry ice
  • corrosive liquids
  • radioactive materials
  • detonating fuses
  • compressed oxygen
  • engines
  • isopropanol
  • non-flammable aerosols
  • phosphoric acid
  • sodium hydroxide and ethanol solutions
  • air bag modules
  • printing ink

“These regulations are intended to keep flight crews and the public safe and we expect airlines to follow these rules to the letter,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx.

United Airlines told the FFA that improvements have been made in the pilot notification system and employee training.

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