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Thursday, March 22, 2007

99 Luftballons Auf Ihrem Weg Zum Horizont

Sorry, Nena. The state of New Hampshire ("Live free or die!"), which is on its way to enacting a statewide smoking ban, now wants to tackle another growing threat: balloons. According to House Bill 62, "It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly release or cause to be released into the atmosphere within a one-hour period 26 or more balloons inflated with lighter-than-air gases." Naturally, no explanation is given why releasing 25 balloons within a one-hour period is perfectly acceptable, while releasing just one more is a criminal act, but that's government for you.

There are a few exemptions, of course:
  • Balloons released by or on behalf of any agency of the United States, the state of New Hampshire, or any other state, territory, or government for scientific or meteorological purposes.
  • Manned hot air balloons.
  • Hot air balloons that are recovered after launch.
Anyone violating this new law would be fined $250 for the first offense and $500 for each subsequent offense. I never realized this kind of thing was such a problem. I guess this means school kids and seniors in New Hampshire will have to come up with another way to find pen pals.

1 comment:

Chris Wilde said...

I hope they have a special exception for aviation pioneers like Lawn Chair Larry! Perhaps he would have got in less trouble if he'd used less than 26 balloons!

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