Lighters Soon Allowed Back on Flights

Joanne Gillespie
Joanne Gillespie

HONOLULU (KHNL) - More than 22,000 lighters are confiscated from travelers across the country before they get on board their flight every day. because of that high number, the ban will soon be lifted.

"it's a good deal," said Bart Forrester. "I mean, what are you gonna do with a lighter anyways."

"I don't see anything wrong with it," said Joanne Gillespie. "Matches can start a fire right now."

Lighters were put on the banned items list in April 2005. But because of the massive amount that screeners are finding, lighters will be allowed through security checkpoints.

Transportation security officials feel lighters are no longer a threat, and they want screeners to concentrate on searching for explosives and other threats.

"We have to focus on the risk - and the risks today to aviation are liquid explosives and improvised explosive devices, not lighters," said Ellen Howe, of the Transportation Security Administration, or TSA.

And just because lighters will be allowed, travelers say it won't mean airplanes will be any more dangerous.

"Having matches on board can start a fire," said Jason Gillespie "Lighters do the same thing as matches, so I don't feel at all that my safety will be compromised."

The lighter ban will be lifted in on August 4th.

Torch lighters, the ones that make a small, needle-like flame, will still be banned.