Jump to Content

E-cigarette flight safety hazard

E-cigarette

Carrying an e-cigarette in your luggage can pose a safety hazard to flights.

A recent incident in the United States demonstrates the potential risk after a passenger found her e-cigarette was smouldering and smoking in her handbag after she got off her flight. Walking through the terminal she realised something was wrong and hurried outside to dump her bag. It had generated enough heat to melt several items in her handbag.

The passenger said that the safety switch on the e-cigarette was off. If the timing was even a little different, it could have resulted in a fire on board the aircraft during flight.

Anyone involved in flight operations, and even passengers, can report a safety concern.

Airline passengers are reminded that e-cigarettes are considered to be personal electronic devices. They must only be carried on aircraft on your person or in your carry-on luggage. Like other lithium battery devices, there is a risk of their catching fire. The ATSB has been notified of similar incidents of smouldering items — including mobile phones, tablets, and an air purifier — carried on board by passengers in recent years.

This incident was reported by a cabin crew member to the United States’ Aviation Safety Reporting Scheme (ASRS), a confidential reporting scheme run by NASA. In Australia, the ATSB runs a similar confidential safety reporting scheme called REPCON. Anyone involved in flight operations, and even passengers, can report a safety concern.

If you have any information which you consider may affect aviation safety please do not keep it to yourself. You can contact the REPCON office on 1800 020 505 or submit a report online.

 

 
Share this page Comment
Last update 02 March 2016