"Must be a PITA to have to get finger printed, background checked and wait 30 days before West Marine will sell you a launcher."
No PITA, that's where the authorities are very frank about saying they will and do turn a blind eye as long as the flare gun is kept to a "boating" context. Is that itself illegal? Sure. But that's the official policy, ignore the conflict of the laws when and if the context says "pyro" rather than "handgun".
That's not unusual, you can openly carry a screwdriver and hammer--but they become illegal burglary tools or weapons when used or carried during the commission of the right crimes.
" As to TSA, I have done my fair share of traveling with inflatable vests and flares. And like their regulations say, flares are forbidden in the cabin of the aircraft. " Then you should know, the FAA and TSA officially say the vest can come in the cabin. But as matter of policy, the TSA inspector at the airport sometimes will not allow it. Don't try to bring one through LGA or SeaTac, they tend to be the among pickiest.
And you're not reading what I'm writing: I didn't say the FLARES were prohibited, I said you wouldn't be allowed to carry an unloaded, i.e. empty, flare LAUNCHER into the cabin. Not the flares, just the launcher. It's back to being a "GUN" and if you try to carry it through LaGuardia, you'll be detained or arrested.
"Tell it to the judge."
As to the USCG knowing whether there are magical federal regulations prohibiting the firing of a red pyro? No, their expertise is in marine regulations, not federal law in general. USCG regulations often apply to vessel owners and operators--but not landlubbers standing ashore. If red pyros were generally illegal, the millions of red roman candles sold LEGALLY by licensed pyro businesses every year wouldn't happen. Think about it. Those stores are heavily regulated in the states where they do legally exist. If they can't cite a regulation--they just might be misinformed. Or, you may be confusing the context. Like "flares" versus "empty flare gun". Two totally different things.
Last edited by hellosailor; 02-03-2012 at 08:27 PM.