February 3, 2018 at 11:08 am NZDT #4037
I have a medical device I travel with for which I have a 75Wh backup battery.
I’ve done 6 international flights with it checked in. No problems. I’ve done 7 domestic flights in which I’ve found notes saying my bag was opened, items checked, approved safe for the hold and repacked.
I flew to Queenstown on Weds and found the usual inspected/repacked note.
Checked in to fly back to Wellington today and 15 minutes later I was called to remove the battery as security had deemed it unsafe.
Wtf and no one could explain why it was fine 3 days ago….!February 4, 2018 at 1:54 pm NZDT #4059GlobalTravellerParticipant
That sounds infuriating!
I wonder what the actual rules are with batteries now?
I remember being told to carry on lithium batteries rather than putting in checked luggage. There maybe is a limit or some other rules around batteries but I can’t remember the specific detail.February 4, 2018 at 2:36 pm NZDT #4061
They must be less than 100Wh.
This is a battery pack that is stand alone, fully enclosed in its own case, and it connects by cable using the typical small round pin plug you find on chargers etc.February 5, 2018 at 12:07 am NZDT #4063Adam JobbinsKeymaster
I have an artificial hip, which sets off metal detectors about half the time. The way it’s dealt with by security screening persons is pretty much random and often very frustrating. The first time I set one off after I got the hip (motorbike accident) they sent me back out, told me to take off my shoes and put them through the xray and come back through where they give me the wand treatment. I was told to just take my shoes off preemptively next time, to save being sent back out.
Since then, I put my shoes through xray by default, often without question, then if I set the metal detector off I explain the hip, they give me the wand-over and on my way. But a few times they have told me off for taking off my shoes before they’ve told me to. Other times, they’ve questioned why I am taking off my shoes then thanked me when I explained what was about to happen. It’s very inconsistent.
I mostly put it down to the different people not knowing all the details of the rules, and sometimes just making up what they think on the spot – which doesn’t really fill me with a lot of confidence.February 5, 2018 at 7:47 am NZDT #4064Steve BiddleKeymaster
The rules are complex but the intent is that carrying lithium batteries in checked baggage should be mimimised or eliminated.
Based on your description of a standalone self contained battery that connects to a device I would definately class this as something that should be taken carry on, and not checked in. Avsec do explain the rules on their site – http://www.avsec.govt.nz/travellers/dangerous-goods/travelling-with-batteries
All powered medical devices require a written letter from the airline to be taken on-board pr checked in. Do you have one of these at all?
Powerbanks getting confiscated is a daily ritual across NZ and it seems people simply do not read the rules at check-in. It was mentioned to me a few months ago that there have been days were over 100 of these have been confiscated in a day, but that it’s normally a lot less than this.
I travel regularly for work with tools and cordless drills so always find security a bit of a pain, but the massive risk lithium batteries pose in the cargo hold is why we have incredibly strict rules.February 5, 2018 at 10:59 am NZDT #4066
The oddity is that on the one hand they have inspected and deemed it fine numerous times and just once so far arrived at the opposite conclusion.
Since it’s bulky and heavy, using a chunk of the 7.5kg carry on allowance for it isn’t ideal.February 6, 2018 at 1:01 pm NZDT #4084Steve BiddleKeymaster
The oddity is that on the one hand they have inspected and deemed it fine numerous times and just once so far arrived at the opposite conclusion. Since it’s bulky and heavy, using a chunk of the 7.5kg carry on allowance for it isn’t ideal.
All medical equipment with batteries needs to be cleared by the airline first before it can be taken. Have you approached Air NZ about this?February 6, 2018 at 2:03 pm NZDT #4085
No, because the battery pack only provides backup in the event of power failure and as such is really no different than any other battery pack.
The device itself is clearly marked Approved by FAA For In-flight use, although I never use it in flight.
I’ll be consulting the aviation security service about it this week.
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