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Avalanche Airbag Travelling & Canister Information

All Airbag Safety Systems (With the exception of the Black Diamond Jet Force witch uses a Lithium Battery) rely on a cylinder of compressed gas (air or nitrogen) to inflate the airbag. This page contains information about transporting the equipment and having them refilled.

Travelling with an Airbag System

Travelling on airlines with compressed gases is heavily regulated.

For Europe and Asia, Avalanche Rescue backpacks have been passed as safe for transport by IATA (IATADGR. Table. 2.3. A) which means that all airlines should allow you to travel (subject to local law). You will need to declare the Airbag pack before check-in and in order to smooth the process it is best to contact your airline's customer service team before you fly to advise them that you will be carrying the sack. As airbags become more common, the airlines are getting more used to dealing with them.

In North America you cannot fly with any compressed gas cylinder unless it is empty and cannot fly with a carbon cylinder even if it is empty. That's why the paint ball refill systems are so popular there.

With appropriate planning there should be no difficulty travelling with an Airbag system throughout most of the world.

There is a thread on Snowheads about travelling with bags like these and people's experiences with different airlines.
http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=72233

Your airline may ask you for information on the cylinder which you can find on the relevant link below. Mammut have also produced an information pack with advice on flying with their airbags and cylinders.

Refilling the Canisters

Mammut / Snowpulse. Once empty the Non Refillable cylinder (no pressure gauge) must be exchanged with a Mammut dealer. This dealer could be in the resort whilst still on holiday (the best solution, no postage) or Facewest will exchange it for you upon your return. Search for 'refill' in the top right search box and pick the appropriate cylinder. The refillable 207 cylinder can be refilled at a dive shop or paintball place if they have the appropriate fittings and you have the seal discs.

Ortovox Avabag. Once empty the carbon cylinder must be exchanged with an Ortovox dealer. This dealer could be in the resort whilst still on holiday (the best solution, no postage) or Facewest will exchange it for you upon your return. Search for 'refill' in the top right search box and pick the appropriate cylinder.

Sending a Cansiter to Facewest

When sending your canister in the post, either full or empty, you must check with the courier if they allow sending of these items. Currently Royal Mail do not allow transport of canisters even when empty. Facewest use UK Mail to ship all canisters. You can drop your canister at Facewest to avoid issues and cost with posting, please give us a call if you want to do this.