US To Ban Lithium Batteries In Checked Luggage

February 27, 2019

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The US Transportation Department has issued an interim final rule (IFR) banning the carrying of lithium ion batteries as cargo on passenger aircraft.

The new rule doesn't restrict passengers or airline crew from taking electronic devices containing lithium cells onto aircraft, just not in checked luggage.

The IFR also permits cargo aircraft to transport lithium ion cells when charged to over 30 percent of capacity when packed or contained in devices.

“This rule will strengthen safety for the travelling public by addressing the unique challenges lithium batteries pose,” US Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao said.

Many airlines already require passengers to carry lithium battery-powered devices in aircraft cabins, not in the cargo hold.

The interim rule is open for public comment for 60 days.