Lithium battery catches fire on Sri Lankan plane
Sri Lankan plane has endured an emergency mid-flight on June 30, 2017, when a lithium ion battery inside a carry-on baggage flared up. The flight attendants managed to put down the fire and the plane landed safely, without additional disruptions.
Sri Lankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka, plane was on the route from Kochi, India to Colombo, Sri Lanka when smoke, coming from a bag in the overhead compartment, was detected. The plane had 202 passengers on board. The flight attendants immediately suspected lithium battery as the cause of the smoke and managed to put it down in a second attempt, Forbes reports.
Lithium batteries – considered as dangerous goods – pose a risk of accidental fire. The discussions about the safety hazards lithium batteries possess have been going on for some time now. The lithium battery problem arises. In 2015, the US Federal Aviation Administration urged airlines to not let the travelers pack extra batteries in their carry-on bags.
In February 2016 ICAO council has adopted a new aviation safety measure by banning all shipments of lithium-ion batteries as cargo on passenger planes. The prohibition applies only to lithium-ion batteries shipped as cargo on passenger planes, not to those contained in personal electronic devices carried by passengers or crew. The council’s decision is effective from April 1, 2016
In August 2016 IATA, together with PRBA, the US Rechargeable Battery Association, RECHARGE, the European Advanced Rechargeable and Lithium Battery Association, the Global Shippers Forum (GSF) and the International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) have called for lithium battery safety regulations to be enforced at the point of origin including the initial shipper and the battery manufacturer, by writing a joint letter to Ministers of Trade, Industry and Transport, and Directors of Civil Aviation in the world’s largest lithium battery manufacturing and export countries.