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Li-ion batteries banned on flights

The International Civil aviation Organization (ICAO) Governing Council has banned shipment of lithium (li-ion) batteries of passenger aircraft.

The ban comes into force on 1 April and will continue until a new packaging performance standard is brought in, which is expected by 2018. This will cover li-ion batteries shipped as cargo on passenger aircraft and will not include those contained in personal electronics equipment of either passengers or crew.

The ban comes after reviews by the ICAO Air navigation Commission, and the United nation’s agency’s Dangerous Goods, Flight Operations, and Airworthiness panels.

ICAO council president, Olumuyiwa Bernard Aliu says: “This interim prohibition will continue to be in force as separate work continues through ICAO on a new lithium battery packaging performance standard, currently expected by 2018.

The Air Line Pilots Association backs the move as says shipments “poses a significant safety risk on passenger flights” but feels needs to be done to address bulk shipments of lithium-metal and Li-ion batteries on cargo aircraft.