FAA Issues Warning About Fire Risk Tied to Samsung Phone Batteries
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On Thursday, the United States Federal Aviation Administration issued a warning to airline passengers about problems associated with a new Samsung smartphone that reportedly has caught fire.
According to The Associated Press, the FAA is asking airline passengers who have the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphone to avoid putting the device in checked luggage due to concerns that the battery could overheat and cause a fire.
In addition, the FAA is warning passengers who carry the phones onto the planes with them to not turn them on or charge them during the flight. While it is rare for the FAA to mention a specific product in its warnings, a massive recall by Samsung over concerns that the rechargeable lithium batteries could cause fires forced the agency to act.
“In light of recent incidents and concerns raised by Samsung about its Galaxy Note 7 devices, the Federal Aviation Administration strongly advises passengers not to turn on or charge these devices on board aircraft and not to stow them in any checked baggage,” the FAA said in a statement on the agency’s official website.
A recent example of the phone’s issues was a family in Florida whose Jeep was destroyed in a fire caused by a Galaxy Note 7 charging in the vehicle, according to ABCNews.com.
In response to the Samsung recalls, three airlines in Australia—Qantas, Jetstar and Virgin Australia—have announced that passengers will be banned from using or charging the Galaxy Note 7 smartphones during flights. Passengers will be able to carry the phones onboard, but they will not be permitted to plug them into chargers or entertainment systems.
“Following Samsung Australia's recall of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 personal electronic device we are requesting that passengers who own them do not switch on or charge them in flight,” a Qantas spokesman said in a statement.
Earlier in 2016, the United Nations’ International Civil Aviation Organization issued a ban on the bulk shipments of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries as cargo on passenger planes due to the fire risks associated with them.
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