First it was sharp objects, then liquids and gels and now it’s lithium batteries that are gaining the scrutiny of airport screeners.
A new federal regulation, prompted by fires caused by overheated lithium batteries in laptop computers, prohibits airline passengers from packing spare lithium batteries in their checked luggage. The rule is effective Jan. 1.
The new rules allow two spare batteries either carried in their original retail packaging or in a zip top plastic bag inside a carry-on bag.
Lithium batteries are typically found in electronic devices such as laptops and video cameras. Batteries stored in electronic devices – including cameras, cell phones, and laptops – are still allowed in both checked and carry-on luggage.
The press release announcing this change is posted on the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Web site.