Gov't Bans Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Phones From Planes
Passengers who try to sneak the phones on board may be fined
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 14, 2016 4:54 PM CDT
A Samsung Galaxy Note 7 after catching fire earlier this month in Virginia.   (Shawn L. Minter via AP)

(Newser) – Passengers and flight crews will be banned from bringing Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphones on airline flights under an emergency order issued Friday by the Department of Transportation, the AP reports. The order, which goes into effect on Saturday, says the phones may not be carried on board or packed in checked bags on flights to and from the US or within the country. The phones also can't be shipped as air cargo. Passengers caught attempting to travel with the phones will have the phones confiscated and may face fines, the department said. Samsung has recalled more than 2.5 million of the smartphones, citing a battery manufacturing error that can cause them to catch fire. The South Korean company discontinued the product earlier this week, less than two months after its August release.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission says there have been nearly 100 reports of batteries in Note 7 phones overheating in the US. One fire erupted on a Southwest Airlines flight earlier this month. In another case, a family in Florida reported a Galaxy Note 7 phone left charging in their Jeep caught fire, destroying the vehicle. The Federal Aviation Administration had previously warned passengers not to pack the phones in their checked bags and to power them off and not charge them while on board planes. "We recognize that banning these phones from airlines will inconvenience some passengers, but the safety of all those aboard an aircraft must take priority," transportation secretary Anthony Foxx said.