Vaping Devices Banned From Checked Luggage
Travelers who stow their vaping supplies in their checked luggage for long-haul flights are in for a rude awakening.
An article posted on Fox News this week states that the U.S. Transportation Department will uphold a ruling from last November to ban all battery-operated vaping devices from checked baggage. Vapers will be able to stow these devices in their carry-on luggage but will be unable to use them on flights, as all forms of smoking are banned on aircraft.
Citing a rash of recent incidents in which checked luggage caught fire, Transportation Secretary Anthony Fox has made it clear that vaping devices are dangerous when left unsupervised. He went on to say that “banning e-cigarettes from checked bags is a prudent and important safety measure.”
This ruling is specific to vape devices that are controlled batteries only, as vaping devices often have sensitive firing buttons. The rule does not exclude other battery-powered electronics, such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, and more as they are harder to power on and have better battery protection.
The temporary ban that was placed on checked vaping devices stems from a variety of incidents that have happened in the past couple of years. In one such instance, a passenger’s vape device caught fire while in the cargo hold of an airplane and caused the passengers and flight crew to evacuate at Logan Airport in Boston. Other incidents have included contained fires in baggage areas of major airports.
The Transportation Department also further clarified on the ban of vaping devices in checked baggage as well as the continued ban of vaping on planes, stating that both bans were for the safety and health of all passengers.
Because of the rise in vapers modifying their own devices, there is a real fear that vape mods are not regulated well enough for battery protection and therefore are fire hazards. With the spate of incidents as evidence and the recent categorization of vaping under the tobacco category with the FDA, the Transportation Department has gone forward to eliminate this threat on board any aircraft.
While smoking traditional cigarettes has been banned on all domestic and international flights, excluding chartered flights, since 2000, it has only been since March of this year that vaping was also banned. While the news is a little disappointing for international travelers, it was anticipated by the vaping community at large.
Vapers who are traveling on aircraft this summer will need to keep this ruling in mind when deciding where to stow their devices in their luggage.