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Airport Restrictions to Lessen

September 25, 2006

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Air travelers will, beginning on Tuesday, September 26, once again be able to carry small amounts of liquids and gels on flights with them. The partial relaxation of a stringent security policy comes in the wake of an announcement by the American Government that security officials know enough about the foiled plot to be able to allow passengers to take things like water and toothpaste in their carry-on bags with them.

The security level will remain high, and travelers may not bring their own liquids or gels for carry-on purposes; rather, they can purchase such things as bottled water and small toiletry items at secure airport stores, and then walk onto the planes with those items. Things like lip gloss and hand lotion may be brought by travelers and carried on, if they are 3 ounces or less in size and fit in a clear, one-quart size plastic bag and if they pass airport security screening procedures.

The plot, revealed in August, involved strategies to use liquid explosives stored in common containers to put together and then explode bombs on planes flying from the United Kingdom to the United States. After the announcement that that plot had failed, the U.S. Homeland Security Department raised its threat level to red, the highest level, for flights from the U.K. to the U.S. Those flights have been reduced to the second-highest level, orange, at which all other flights remain.

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