For Immediate Release

May 10, 2001
Contact: Allen Kenitzer
Phone: (425) 227-2015

RENTON, Wa. — The Federal Aviation Administration has proposed to assess a $95,000 civil penalty against KLM Royal Dutch Airlines of the Netherlands for allegedly violating U.S. Department of Transportation hazardous materials regulations.

The FAA alleges that KLM employees in the Netherlands offered a shipment containing an oxygen generator and protective breathing equipment to KLM for transportation by air as cargo on a passenger flight from Amsterdam to Los Angeles, Sept. 26, 2000. The hazardous materials were not declared, the crew was not notified the flight was carrying such materials and the shipment was in packages that did not meet specifications for its transport. Oxygen generators are forbidden from transportation on passenger aircraft.

KLM then offered the generator to Federal Express for transportation by air from Los Angeles to Seattle, the shipment was delivered to the Boeing Spares Distribution Center where it was opened and the presence of the hazardous materials disclosed to the FAA.

The FAA alleges that KLM improperly offered, accepted and transported as cargo hazardous materials that were not properly classed, described, packaged, marked, labeled, or in a condition, for shipment required by the hazardous materials regulations. The FAA also alleges that KLM failed to notify the pilots that hazardous materials were on board and that the shipment was not accompanied by required emergency response information.

KLM will have 30 days from its receipt of the FAA's enforcement letter to respond to the agency. This announcement of the proposed civil penalty is made in accordance with the FAA's policy of releasing information to the public on newly issued enforcement actions in cases involving penalties of $50,000 or more.