Swift Delta Ground Crew Catch Lithium Ion Battery Fire Just Before Takeoff

Yesterday a Delta Embraer E-175 regional jet was headed from Salt Lake City to Bozeman, Montana as Delta flight DL4449. Crew smelled smoke coming from the jet’s cargo hold. They unloaded and found a black bag smoldering with a lithium ion battery inside.

Despite the drama the flight was only delayed about half an hour.

And this, Department of Homeland Security, is why you don’t require passengers to check electronics with lithium ion batteries as baggage. If they hadn’t caught this prior to departure they could have had a much more serious situation on their hands.

(HT: Rene’s Points)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. The FAA needs to mandate all checked baggage be screened for lithium batteries. Now. I suspect give the laissez faire government is evil and corporations are always right attitude in government right now that this is not going to happen. We’re going to see another valujet before folks wake up.

  2. Where has DHS mandated pax check electronics? I always fly with my iPad. I must have been lucky!

  3. When did Delta started loading bags “just before takeoff”? Do they do this at the end of the runway after the aircraft is aligned for takeoff or in the taxiway?

    This clickbait is disgusting.

  4. The picture on the Safe landing at Bozeman is actually from the D/E gates at SLC, looking north.

    Great job by the crew, SLC ground have to be among the best in the world.

  5. @ Ray,

    It’s pretty simple. Consumers stop flying airlines that don’t screen for lithium-ion batteries in their checked luggage. However, this is complicated by the fact that the TSA is in charge of screening, and is the opposite of the free market. This is one of those instances where the free market can’t solve the problem because the free market isn’t allowed to operate one of the steps

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