There’s not much information at the moment, but it seems passengers were forced to evacuate a plane in Boston this week when an electronic cigarette burned a hole through a checked bag. The incident is likely to draw a lot of attention.
Officials at Logan International Airport, where the incident occurred, are now calling for authorities to place restrictions for electronic cigarettes on planes. Meanwhile, it is almost certain that the same anti-e-cig voices we’re accustomed to hearing will be spouting off about how dangerous the devices are.
However, it seems unlikely authorities can really do anything that might prevent this situation. While they can certainly place heavy controls on what is checked, it is difficult to police electronic cigarettes in checked baggage. After all, current regulations allow firearms, power saws, ammunition, flare guns, and small compressed gas canisters to be in checked baggage.
Restricting carry-on access of electronic cigarettes seems to be the most likely step regulators will start with. But this incident occurred in checked luggage — and might actually have been prevented had the device been with the passenger. Like so many other stories, there isn’t much else to go on, but you can read about it here.
According to the Department of Transportation, Federal Aviation Administration officials are investigating the situation.