The Associated Press July 8, 2011, 4:25PM ET

FAA seeks hazardous-shipping fine against FedEx

Federal officials are seeking a $689,800 fine against Federal Express Corp., saying the company violated rules on shipping hazardous materials.

FedEx said the incidents in 2009 did not pose a safety threat.

The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday that on 89 flights, FedEx failed to give pilots complete and accurate information about their cargo.

The FAA also said that FedEx accepted four shipments of hazardous materials even though the cargo was not accurately described and certified in shipping documents.

The FAA said it found violations of federal rules during a 2009 inspection at the company's cargo-handling facility at Bradley International Airport near Hartford, Conn.

Federal rules require that pilots be told if they are carrying dangerous goods so they can take safety precautions.

Companies have 30 days to appeal proposed FAA civil penalties. A FedEx spokeswoman said the company planned to do so.

"These cases involved documentation errors and didn't pose a safety threat to our aircraft or our crew," said FedEx spokeswoman Sally Davenport.

In four cases, she said, shipping documents listed the wrong weights for hazardous cargo, and in two, they gave the wrong number of packages. In 10 cases, she said, packages failed to carry a label saying they were intended for cargo aircraft only.

Davenport said about one-half of 1 percent of the company's shipments involve dangerous or hazardous materials, which can range from volatile substances to dry ice used to keep food shipments cold.

Shares of Memphis-based FedEx fell 94 cents to end Friday at $97.56.


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