Gov’t bans e-cigarettes in airline passengers’ checked bags

WASHINGTON (AP) — A new federal rule forbids airline passengers from packing electronic cigarettes or other battery-operated electronic smoking devices in their checked bags to protect against in-flight fires.

The rule still allows e-cigarettes in carry-on bags, but passengers cannot recharge the devices while on the plane.

The Department of Transportation said there have been at least 26 incidents since 2009 in which e-cigarettes that have caused explosions or fires, including several in which the devices were packed in luggage. Usually, they have been accidentally left on or the battery short-circuits.

At Los Angeles International Airport in January, a checked bag that arrived late and missed its connecting flight caught fire in the luggage area due to an overheated e-cigarette packed inside.

The rule goes into effect within the next two weeks.

 

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

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