After being on, then off, then on, then off again, Imperial Valley crop dusters are being allowed to fly again as of Monday.
Fears that crop dusters could be used to spread biological agents led to the grounding of the planes at a time when some crops in the Imperial Valley have just been planted.
After the terrorist events in New York and Washington, D.C., the crop dusters were granted an exemption Friday, then grounded again Sunday afternoon, according to a spokesman for Imperial Valley Applicators, who asked not to be named. He said there is a lot of alfalfa and vegetables just germinating that need spraying.
Monday afternoon, the Federal Aviation Administration office in San Diego gave the go-ahead for crop dusters to resume flying, although they must remain out of airspace where transponders are required, such as metropolitan areas with large airports.