Virgin Australia bans all MacBook, MacBook Pro models from checked bags

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited August 27
Virgin Australia has updated its list of items banned from checked luggage on its flights to include MacBooks, with all models no longer permitted in the hold by the airline following the company's global recall of some MacBook Pro varieties over battery concerns.




The update to the baggage policy takes the form of a warning on the airline's "Dangerous Goods" page, with an additional notification at the top of the page advising of the change. While the ban applies to checked luggage, Virgin Australia does allow all MacBooks to be included in carry-on baggage.

The ban applies to "ALL Apple MacBooks," indicating it covers every model of MacBook, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro Apple sells, the notice spotted by MacPrices Australia reads. While there is no explanation as to why it is a blanket ban of Apple's notebook lineup, it is likely a move to make it easier for customers and airline staff to manage, rather than to check whether that particular model is subject to the battery recall.

Virgin Australia's policy change isn't permanent either, as it advises it will be in force "until further notice."

The warning on Virgin Australia's 'Dangerous Goods' baggage page
The warning on Virgin Australia's 'Dangerous Goods' baggage page


The policy change by the airline follows a similar move implemented by the Federal Aviation Authority to instruct airlines to follow rules relating to products with recalled batteries. Under the 2016 regulation, affected devices are restricted on cargo planes, and as carry-on items on passenger flights.

US FAA agents are using USB-C ports to identify newer models. In practice, US officials are requiring any Retina MacBook Pro from 2012 to 2015 to be carried on instead of checked, and very few, if any, serial number checks are being made.

Apple's battery recall was issued in June, and applies to mid-2015 15-inch MacBook Pro models sold between September 2015 and February 2017. According to the company, some units contain battery cells that have a chance of overheating, and "pose a fire safety risk."

There have been some reports about battery failures in the models, including images shared by one designer of a hole in the base of his MacBook Pro following a battery failure. Meanwhile, Apple is also being sued by one New Jersey resident after they sustained "serious and permanent personal injuries" to their left leg, allegedly caused by the notebook and its charger.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 20
    Unless they're 100% BANNED FROM FLIGHT, this isn't really an issue.  Nearly all US-based airlines already ban ALL lithium batteries from checked luggage, so this isn't a surprise at all.  It's to the point where any and all electronic devices need to be brought onto the plane in carry on.  Shocked anywhere else in the world let you even put them in checked luggage still.
    ashleyravnorodomMacQclkrupptoysandmedysamorialolliverradarthekaturaharawatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 20
    mrboba1mrboba1 Posts: 275member
    I had no idea you could (or would want to) check any computers.
    dysamorialolliverradarthekatCarnageuraharajony0
  • Reply 3 of 20
    larryjwlarryjw Posts: 426member
    I can image some passengers who would be inconvenienced to the extreme, for most passengers, carry-on of a computer is standard practice. 

    I did meet one passenger once, a professional photographer/videographer, who would have to check his vast array of equipment. I would expect airlines have procedures to handle passengers like this. 
    MacQcradarthekat
  • Reply 4 of 20
    Mr MagooMr Magoo Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    Worrying though as from one small seed grows. This has the potential to spread and if it does then this will impact so many people. If banned then for sure Apple will find a long list of class action filings against it, For a large majority of us what good is a laptop you cannot travel overseas with. Lets hope this is a one off an Apple can resolve with VA or is VA headline grabbing? Itn also mean the VA commercial cargo flights will ban shipping.
  • Reply 5 of 20
    knowitallknowitall Posts: 1,462member
    Mr Magoo said:
    Worrying though as from one small seed grows. This has the potential to spread and if it does then this will impact so many people. If banned then for sure Apple will find a long list of class action filings against it, For a large majority of us what good is a laptop you cannot travel overseas with. Lets hope this is a one off an Apple can resolve with VA or is VA headline grabbing? Itn also mean the VA commercial cargo flights will ban shipping.
    It will need a solid state battery to solve this. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 20
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,464member
    Mr Magoo said:
    Worrying though as from one small seed grows. This has the potential to spread and if it does then this will impact so many people. If banned then for sure Apple will find a long list of class action filings against it, For a large majority of us what good is a laptop you cannot travel overseas with. Lets hope this is a one off an Apple can resolve with VA or is VA headline grabbing? Itn also mean the VA commercial cargo flights will ban shipping.
    You are trying to blow this up into an “Apple is doomed” thing for no reason. You do realize this is only for checked baggage and as stated by another poster most airlines already ban devices with lithium-ion batteries from being checked. When I send a package through the U.S. mail the first thing they ask is does it contain lithium-ion batteries.
    edited August 27 magman1979pscooter63Rayz2016lolliver
  • Reply 7 of 20
    dewmedewme Posts: 2,198member
    mrboba1 said:
    I had no idea you could (or would want to) check any computers.
    I have to agree. There mere thought of checking a relatively delicate and very expensive computer as baggage that's subject to handsy TSA inspectors, automated baggage handling equipment, and manual loading and unloading sends shivers up my spine. Have you ever seen the "special care" that some baggage handlers give to your precious luggage when they're loading or unloading it from the plane's cargo hold? If you're squeamish about seeing how the sausage actually gets stuffed - avoid the window seats.
    dysamorialolliverradarthekaturaharawatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 20
    Never check in anything valuable especially a MacBook. I and many others know from experience that TSA will steal it.
    lolliverradarthekatCarnagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 20
    larryjw said:
    I can image some passengers who would be inconvenienced to the extreme, for most passengers, carry-on of a computer is standard practice. 

    I did meet one passenger once, a professional photographer/videographer, who would have to check his vast array of equipment. I would expect airlines have procedures to handle passengers like this. 
    Unfortunately, the majority do not have a great procedure to handle professionals traveling with any forms of electronic equipment.  This is mostly due to their insurance limits at $3k/bag maximum (good luck actually getting that).  FedEx is often the better option for most domestic travel (even if more expensive).  Overall, it's become a major pain to travel by air for video work in the past 5-10 years.
    flyingdpdysamorialolliverwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 20
    For your viewing pleasure. Airlines training video:
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vS6KA_Si-m8

    Interesting info:
    Since 2006 three cargo jets have been destroyed and four pilots killed by in-flight fires that investigators say were either started by batteries or made more severe by their proximity.”

    http://avsax.com/news/fears-a-burning-laptop-could-destroy-a-passenger-plane
  • Reply 11 of 20
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,464member
    The battery revolution is held back by electronic conglomerate refuse to abandon lithium-ion battery that can spark an enormous fire and wipe out amazon rainforest.
    Oh bullshit. The holy grail of the electronics industry is to find a replacement for Li-Ion that lasts longer and is safe. The company that does that will make billions upon billions. The labs at MIT are teaming with research on alternatives. There’s a documentary on Amazon Prime hosted by David Pogue about battery development by a scientist who has created a lithium-ion battery that you can cut with a knife, pound nails into, smash with a hammer and it continues to output power without catching fire.
    flyingdppscooter63StrangeDayslolliverMacPro
  • Reply 12 of 20
    mknelsonmknelson Posts: 370member
    That seems like quite the overreaction!

    "”Since 2006 three cargo jets have been destroyed and four pilots killed by in-flight fires that investigators say were either started by batteries or made more severe by their proximity.”"

    I've seen that on "Mayday" on Discovery Channel in Canada.

    Those were industrial sized shipments, not a small number of laptops.
    pscooter63dysamoriaradarthekat
  • Reply 13 of 20
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,788member
    People let baggage handlers near their laptops? 😱
    lolliverradarthekatlkrupp
  • Reply 14 of 20
    lkrupp said:
    The battery revolution is held back by electronic conglomerate refuse to abandon lithium-ion battery that can spark an enormous fire and wipe out amazon rainforest.
    Oh bullshit. The holy grail of the electronics industry is to find a replacement for Li-Ion that lasts longer and is safe. The company that does that will make billions upon billions. The labs at MIT are teaming with research on alternatives. There’s a documentary on Amazon Prime hosted by David Pogue about battery development by a scientist who has created a lithium-ion battery that you can cut with a knife, pound nails into, smash with a hammer and it continues to output power without catching fire.
    What do you think a guy with the name "conspiracy" will say?
    dysamorialolliver
  • Reply 15 of 20
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 8,811member
    The battery revolution is held back by electronic conglomerate refuse to abandon lithium-ion battery that can spark an enormous fire and wipe out amazon rainforest.
    WTF.
    lolliver
  • Reply 16 of 20
    davgregdavgreg Posts: 481member
    Cannot imagine checking anything valuable on an airline.

    Apple’s decision to stop using user replaceable batteries was stupid and this is another example. Same for the iPhone- imagine how easy the process for the iPhone batterygate recall would have been had users put them in at home.

    dysamoria
  • Reply 17 of 20
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 2,349member
    bsbeamer said:
    larryjw said:
    I can image some passengers who would be inconvenienced to the extreme, for most passengers, carry-on of a computer is standard practice. 

    I did meet one passenger once, a professional photographer/videographer, who would have to check his vast array of equipment. I would expect airlines have procedures to handle passengers like this. 
    Unfortunately, the majority do not have a great procedure to handle professionals traveling with any forms of electronic equipment.  This is mostly due to their insurance limits at $3k/bag maximum (good luck actually getting that).  FedEx is often the better option for most domestic travel (even if more expensive).  Overall, it's become a major pain to travel by air for video work in the past 5-10 years.
    It’s become a major pain to travel by air because the TSA exists. I have boycotted flying since they started doing the X-ray of passengers (and/or the “optional” physical assault of the “pat down” check). The TSA is documented as a worthless system for its intended purpose. It is security theatre. Its greatest “success” is in being a violation of rights (as well as a waste of time and resources), and it absolutely needs to be abolished. Yet most Americans just keep promoting the “it keeps us safe” meme. It does no such thing. I don’t understand how the “fiscal conservatives” haven’t already put it down as a waste of money. Yeah, I know, they want to privatize it...
    edited August 27
  • Reply 18 of 20
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 1,729member
    DuhSesame said:
    lkrupp said:
    The battery revolution is held back by electronic conglomerate refuse to abandon lithium-ion battery that can spark an enormous fire and wipe out amazon rainforest.
    Oh bullshit. The holy grail of the electronics industry is to find a replacement for Li-Ion that lasts longer and is safe. The company that does that will make billions upon billions. The labs at MIT are teaming with research on alternatives. There’s a documentary on Amazon Prime hosted by David Pogue about battery development by a scientist who has created a lithium-ion battery that you can cut with a knife, pound nails into, smash with a hammer and it continues to output power without catching fire.
    What do you think a guy with the name "conspiracy" will say?
    probably that @lkrupp is part of the conspiracy!
  • Reply 19 of 20
    MplsP said:
    DuhSesame said:
    lkrupp said:
    The battery revolution is held back by electronic conglomerate refuse to abandon lithium-ion battery that can spark an enormous fire and wipe out amazon rainforest.
    Oh bullshit. The holy grail of the electronics industry is to find a replacement for Li-Ion that lasts longer and is safe. The company that does that will make billions upon billions. The labs at MIT are teaming with research on alternatives. There’s a documentary on Amazon Prime hosted by David Pogue about battery development by a scientist who has created a lithium-ion battery that you can cut with a knife, pound nails into, smash with a hammer and it continues to output power without catching fire.
    What do you think a guy with the name "conspiracy" will say?
    probably that @lkrupp is part of the conspiracy!
    Well, I'm the SNAPNATOR® salesman then.
    edited August 28
  • Reply 20 of 20
    linkmanlinkman Posts: 934member
    dipdog3 said:
    Never check in anything valuable especially a MacBook. I and many others know from experience that TSA will steal it.
    I don't know of any statistics, but I would bet that baggage handlers steal more than TSA. And those TSA locks -- the keys are out in the wild and are of minimal security now.
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