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UK bans uncharged mobile devices from flights


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Charge those smartphones before flying

Following the recent ban on uncharged mobile devices for all US-bound flights, the UK Department for Transport has now adopted similar measures for domestic flights.

Planning on flying from or to the UK? Then you might well be asked to prove that your mobile devices (including phones, tablets, and laptops) are charged by switching them on - or have them banned from the flight.

It follows the US government's implementation of similar measures just last week.

"In line with the US advice," reads a DfT statement, "passengers on some routes into and out of the UK may now also be required to show that electronic devices in their hand luggage are powered up or face not being allowed to bring the device onto the aircraft."

The advice, then, is to make sure your smartphone, tablet, and laptop is fully charged before you book into your next flight.

The precise UK routes selected for this screening process have not been divulged for obvious security reasons, but according to The Telegraph they could involved flights to the Middle East and parts of Asia.

These measures follow reports that terrorists have developed a new kind of explosive that can avoid detection by conventional security measures.

If any of your devices are barred from a UK flight for this reason, it seems you'll be able to collect them upon your return. BA, meanwhile, is offering the option of rebooking a flight 24 hours later, or of having your flat device forwarded to an address of your choice.

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Harry Clark

July 9, 2014, 5:08 pm

This must be some sort of a sick joke ? the safest state for any electronic device is powered down, this is why you are asked to switch all electronic items off, before boarding an aircraft ? so any uncharged battery operated electronic device could never be used to trigger any sort of explosion and as such must be in the safest mode it could ever be ? I think they should take all the so called experts who came up with this one to an isolated spot on the planet surrounded be a barbed wire enclosure and deep ditches with alligators in them and left there until they can prove there sanity to all and sundry

Prem Desai

July 9, 2014, 6:20 pm

It seems we're doing this just because the Americans are doing it (smacks of the stupid leading the stupid or blind or whatever).

One could easily replace the normal laptop battery and substitute it for one 5% the size - using the rest of the space for whatever.

After spending millions of tax payers money, can they really not invent scanner that actually work.

This also creates a massive headache for any shops in the airports who sell such devices.

Charged or partially charged batteries (lithium ones which is the majority) are a serious fire hazard. We are potentially creating a bigger problem than we are solving ....


July 9, 2014, 7:09 pm

I think the issue is that there is some sort of scare of bombs looking like phones that fool the detectors. If the phone turns on it is not a bomb, hence they need to check that it turns on, hence the power requirement. Could be just the latest scare of course - difficult to tell

Blasph Emy

July 10, 2014, 5:06 am

Do they realise that with such a rule, there will be frantic search for charging ports in the airports? Most airports have very limited options for mobile charging in the public waiting area. And why do UK just blindly follow US in whatever stupid rules they bring ? How about impeaching the queen ?


July 10, 2014, 9:12 am

thank for information

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July 11, 2014, 9:06 am

"terrorists have developed a new kind of explosive that can avoid detection by conventional security measures".

The hypocrisy is that is far more likely that the US have developed it (which was presumably considered to be OK for them) Terrorists have probably just bought some at the last arms trade fair. And now they've sold it to them they're moaning about the possibility of their customers using their products against them.

You couldn't make this stuff up. It's priceless!!!

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