FAA's Samsung Galaxy Note7 Flight Ban Complicates Life for Travelers
Note7 smartphones have been banned from all flights, so Note7 owners have to scramble to replace their phones before flying.With the banning of Samsung Galaxy Note7 smartphones on all flights in the United States by the Federal Aviation Administration, travelers who own the discontinued handsets now have to make arrangements to replace their phones before their trips or leave the recalled, fire-prone devices behind when they have to travel. The FAA ban on the Note7 on all aircraft in the United States came in an emergency order by the agency following a federal and global recall of the handsets, which have been the source of more than 100 fires and explosions caused by defects in their nonremovable lithium-ion batteries. The fires occurred in the original Note7 devices that were released to the market in August and then also apparently have been occurring in the Note7 smartphones that were distributed starting Sept. 21 to replace the defective original units. Because of the propensity of the Note7 phone to overheat and catch fire without warning, the FAA issued its ban to prevent the possibility of dangerous fires aboard aircraft. While the Note7 has been recalled, there are still owners who have the phones in their possession and who have not yet returned the devices for refunds or alternative models. As part of the flight ban for the Note7, the FAA, along with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), ordered that all "individuals who own or possess a Samsung Galaxy Note7 device may not transport the device on their person, in carry-on baggage, or in checked baggage on flights to, from, or within the United States," according to the order, which was announced on Oct. 14. The devices can also not be shipped by air cargo in the United States.
What all of this means is that if a traveler still has a Note7 and hasn't turned it in for replacement or refund, that traveler is not boarding a flight with the device in his or her possession, according to the FAA.