Boeing has advised airlines not to carry large quantities of lithium-ion batteries as bellyhold cargo until improved packaging is developed.
The aircraft manufacturer has sent guidance to carriers urging them not to move the batteries as cargo “until safer methods of packaging and transport are established and implemented”.
Lithium-ion batteries have been blamed for the loss of a UPS McDonnell Douglas DC-8 in 2006; a UPS Boeing 747-400 Freighter in 2010 and an Asiana Airlines Cargo 747-400F in 2011. From 1 January, lithium metal batteries were restricted to freighters when by themselves.
The Rechargeable Battery Association (PRBA) says it shares Boeing goals of the safe transport of bulk shipments of lithium-ion batteries by air.
The PRBA add it will be discussing with Boeing, other aircraft manufacturers, the airline industry and regulators at an International Civil Aviation Organization meeting in late July “battery transportation issues, specifically a new and unprecedented lithium-ion battery standard and packaging criteria”.