The Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), the world’s largest non-governmental aviation safety organization, applauded the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) recent proposal to prohibit lithium batteries installed in certain electronic equipment from checked baggage on passenger aircraft.
The FAA issued its recommendations to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Dangerous Goods Panel after internal tests repeatedly demonstrated substantial fire concerns.
“ALPA has long called for international organizations to address the significant hazards associated with the safe transport of lithium batteries on passenger and cargo aircraft. We commend the FAA for their thoroughness in demonstrating the risks these batteries present when unmonitored and call on ICAO to implement these recommendations,” said Tim Canoll, ALPA president.
In addition, ALPA issued a letter to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao expressing concerns regarding the recent decision to replace the FAA as the lead U.S. representative on ICAO’s Dangerous Goods Panel, which is considering the proposed ban at their current meeting.
“It is inappropriate to have an agency that is not responsible for the regulatory oversight of aviation to lead the delegation that is making recommendations to improve the safety of that sector of transportation,” wrote Capt. Canoll.
As the FAA was continuing their charge of promoting aviation safety, Secretary Chao indicated that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) would take over as the lead for U.S. negotiations on the regulation of dangerous goods at future ICAO meetings.