Sunday, October 17

DCA probing vape battery fire incident in cabin on flight

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PUTRAJAYA: The Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) is concerned with the reported incident onboard Malindo Air flight OD1003, whereby an electronic smoking device battery apparently caught fire in its cabin on Oct 25.

DCA director-general Datuk Seri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman in a statement yesterday said the department was currently conducting an internal investigation on the matter.

He outlined the Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air (ICAO Doc 9284) issued by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO):

1. Passengers and cabin crew are prohibited from carrying battery-powered portable electronic smoking devices including electronic cigarettes in checked baggage.

2. Prohibits recharging of battery-powered portable electronic smoking devices in aircraft cabins.

3. Batteries shall be removed from electronic smoking devices and be put in proper storage.

“These instructions shall be complied with by the airline operators, crew and passengers so as to avoid similar incidents in future,” said Azharuddin in the statement.

In was reported that in the 6.45pm incident, an electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) battery inside a bag which was placed on a passenger’s lap suddenly burst into flames just after the aircraft took off from Kota Kinabalu for the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2).

It was reported that the passenger sustained burns on the thighs and left hand.

Meanwhile, Sepang district police chief, ACP Abdul Aziz Ali said police had interviewed the passenger and decided that the incident was not a criminal act, but negligence on the part of the passenger who owned the vape.

“That is why no action has been taken against the passenger…actually, (this case) does not come under the jurisdiction of the police.”

He said this when asked to comment on the incident after the handing-out of 10 patrol cars of the Inspira model at the Sepang district police headquarters, yesterday. — Bernama