No change to in-flight rules on lighters, needles

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 10 April, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 10 April, 2005, 12:00am

Hong Kong aviation authorities plan neither to ban cigarette lighters on flights, nor allow objects such as knitting needles aboard, despite security regulations being adjusted elsewhere.

The United States' Aviation Security Authority recently barred lighters on flights to, from or within the country. The measure comes into effect on Thursday. All US-bound flights, including those out of Hong Kong, and US airlines will need to comply with the new requirements.

But the Civil Aviation Department said it would not adopt the measure.

Hong Kong currently goes by the list of prohibited items published by the International Civil Aviation Organisation, and each passenger is allowed to carry one lighter aboard a plane.

New Zealand is considering relaxing in-flight security after Britain's Transport Department announced that passengers would be permitted to carry a limited number of sharp objects, such as small scissors and knitting needles, onto British airline flights.

Hong Kong had no intention of following that move either, said a Civil Aviation Department spokesman. The department consults airlines regularly on in-flight security, but so far it has found no amendments necessary.