Airlines have been banning Apple Inc.’s 15- inch MacBook Pro models that were sold between September 2015 to February 2017 in safety measures for the industry.
Restrictions on MacBook Pro laptops on flights spread, with Qantas Airways Ltd, being the latest airline to bar the laptop model from checked-in luggage on concern that batteries could catch fire.
‘All 15-inch versions of Apple Inc.’s MacBook Pro must be carried in the cabin and switched off’, Qantas said in a statement Wednesday.
On the other hand, Rival Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd. went further on Aug. 26, banning all Apple laptops from checked-in luggage.
Apple issued the recall in June, saying “in a limited number of older generation 15-inch MacBook Pro units, the battery may overheat and pose a fire safety risk.”
Australia’s two biggest airlines join a growing list of carriers and jurisdictions across the world cracking down on the portable computers out of concern some could self-combust.
Singapore Airlines Ltd. and Thai Airways International PCL have already stopped passengers from taking any of the affected models on their aircraft.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) earlier in August said it alerted major U.S. airlines about Apple’s recall. The FAA reminded airlines to follow 2016 safety instructions for goods with recalled batteries.
The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) also issued its own warning about these MacBook Pro models on Aug. 1.
‘Following a further recall of portable electronic devices due to issues with batteries, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) wishes to remind aircraft operators from EASA member states and foreign operators flying into, within or out of Europe to implement its Safety Information Bulletin’
This means the affected Apple laptops should not be taken on flights as cargo or carry-on baggage.
In the past couple of years, the use of lithium-ion batteries has been linked to fires and spewing smoke in a slew of products, including Samsung’s now-canceled Galaxy Note 7, hoverboards and Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner.
Nonetheless, while there have been repeated incidents of phones, laptops and other devices overheating and catching fire in planes’ passenger compartments, a fire hasn’t ever gone out of control.
There have been at least three accidents, two of them fatal, on cargo airlines since 2006 in which lithium batteries were suspected of causing fires.
Featured Image courtesy of PC Mag
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