Another laptop ban may be on its way.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is campaigning to stop passengers on international flights from placing laptops and other large electronic devices in their checked bags because of fire concerns.
The move comes after recent tests conducted by the FAA found that a lithium-ion battery, like those in laptops, may overheat and explode when packed with an item such as nail polish, aerosol shampoo, or hand sanitizer.
In ten different tests, the FAA found that a fully-charged laptop placed in a suitcase and heated caused the aerosol container to explode almost immediately. It also reported that the explosion would disable an airplane’s fire safety system and lead to “the loss of the aircraft.”
The FAA have reported those test results in a paper filed with the United Nations’ International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). It is hoping that there will be an international ban on packing large electronics in baggage without specific approval from an airline.
The ICAO will discuss the ban on its panel on dangerous goods held over the next two weeks at its headquarters in Montreal.
The FAA has been warning airlines about the dangers of lithium batteries for some time. In February 2016, it issued a warning that lithium batteries could cause “catastrophic plane fires,” such as the one that forced a JetBlue flight to divert in May 2017 after a passenger’s backpack caught fired.
According to the FAA, the European Safety Agency, Airbus, the International Federation of Airline Pilots, and the International Coordinating Council of Aerospace Industries all support the move.
The news comes just months after the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) decided to lift its ban on passengers bringing large electronics in their carry-ons.
That ban restricted passengers on nine carriers — Egyptair, Emirates Airline, Etihad Airways, Kuwait Airways, Qatar Airways, Royal Air Maroc, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines and Turkish Airlines — to bringing nothing larger than a smartphone onboard. That ban was lifted after international airports started to comply with increased security standards.