European Commission Announces Permanent Restrictions on Liquids in Hand Luggage

The European Commission (EC), the executive body of the European Union, has announced that a 100ml limit on liquids, aerosols and gels (LAGs) in the hand luggage of air passengers has been made permanent.

The EC has completed an assessment of the various liquid formats in air passenger’s hand luggage, and based on the results of trials carried out at several EU airports and general consultations with experts, a conclusion has been reached that there still exists a significant risk to civil aviation from liquid explosives. The assessment shows that removing the LAGs restrictions in April 2013, as earlier predicted in EU law, may lead to significant operational risk for the airports and airlines.

In a statement, the EU has said, ‘Starting in January 2014, the Commission recommends that passengers should be able to carry on board all duty free LAGs provided that they are screened.

In the light of the experience gained and in close cooperation with its European and international partners, the Commission will then bring forward proposals for subsequent phases to achieve the final objective of screening all LAGs at the earliest possible date.

To implement these recommendations, the Commission will bring forward proposals to amend the existing legislation on LAGs in Autumn 2012, with the agreement of the Member States and the European Parliament.’

The director general of Airports Council International Europe, Olivier Jankovec, said, ‘As much as we would like to get rid of the existing restrictions on the carriage of LAGs, the trials carried out at several European airports have shown that the technology allowing for that just isn’t there yet.’