US Safety Board Can't Rule Out Laptop Batteries In Plane Fire


I started this.
Staff member
US Safety Board Can't Rule Out Laptop Batteries In Plane Fire - Smart Money

The three crew members on the UPS (UPS) cargo plane jumped to safety on the tarmac and were treated for minor injuries after the aircraft made an emergency landing around midnight on Feb. 7, 2006. The airplane and most of the cargo were destroyed by the fire, which started as the plane approached Philadelphia.

The blaze was one of several in recent years in which lithium batteries caught fire on aircraft. Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, sometimes called "secondary" lithium batteries, and nonrechargeable, or "primary" lithium batteries, can present fire hazards because of the heat they generate when they are damaged or suffer a short circuit.


Industrial Slob
the firefighters couldn't deal with the door because they all thought that no one flew DC8's any more.

and all the doors have instructions on them anyways....


Well-Known Member
I have followed both NTSB meetings.

The NTSB refrains from directly implicating Li-batteries, as due to the destruction, no evidence could be found.
In this context, how much HazMat (declared and undeclared) is really on these airplanes (and UPS trucks)? Going by my own experience in handling HazMat, more than you think. The sad part is that the general public is not always aware of what HazMat is. Even when it is pointed out in their own homes, it will be said "no one ever told me". Proper labelling is one aspect. The law with so many exemptions (and rules which are difficult to read) is another aspect.
Consider one simple purchase; pool chlorine or solvent-based paint you buy at, e.g., Home Depot. If you move this in your own private vehicle to your own home, than this transportation is not covered by 49 CFR.
If Home Depot transports it to your home and charges for the transportation (they do), then this is covered by regulations, and everthing (packing, marking, labelling and documentation) is regulated by 49 CFR, including training of the drivers, and warehouse personnel.


Well-Known Member
Look at the upcoming challenges, when the car industry requires even more Li-ion batteries for its hybrids. Another definite challenge will be the transportation of fuel cell cartridges for computers/laptops and other devices. Regulations (and UN numbers) exist already (see CFR 49), but does a private consumer know about these regulations when he/she submits a package containing one of these new types of batteries to a UPS store for shipment? I doubt it. When I hear "battery" all my alarm bells are on and I want to know a "little bit" more. UPS and Fedex have sufficient "bad" experience with Li-batteries.
Avoidable incident/accident? The NTSB has not taken a position on it. Maybe the insurer of UPS will have a very close look at certain shipping practices.


Well-Known Member
Re: Undeclared/misdeclared HM cargo

Small follow-up, unrelated to the UPS DC-8.
Please see Firm told to pay $65 M for ruining plane
Source: Reuters
A chinese company was told to pay $65M for basically destroying a fairly new A330 (leakage of oxalyl chloride, a highly corrosive and toxic chemical, UN 2922, PG II only) of Malaysian Airlines. Was declared as a chemical powder. cargo load: 80 barrels. leaked and corroded the airplane in Kuala Lumpur to such an extent, that airbus said it was non-repairable.
If this would have happened in the air, passengers would have died.
It is so important to exercise maximum caution and awareness when handling these items.