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Lithium Batteries as Cargo Update III

Monday, February 22, 2016

On 22 February the ICAO Council adopted the recommendation of the ICAO Air Navigation Commission (ANC) that lithium ion batteries, UN 3480, Packing Instruction 965 only, be forbidden, on an interim basis, as cargo on passenger aircraft.

Additional Changes for Lithium Ion Batteries

On 22 February the ICAO Council adopted the recommendation of the ICAO Air Navigation Commission (ANC) that lithium ion batteries, UN 3480, Packing Instruction 965 only, be forbidden, on an interim basis, as cargo on passenger aircraft. The prohibition does not apply to lithium ion batteries packed with equipment or lithium ion batteries contained in equipment, UN 3481, Packing Instruction 966 and Packing Instruction 967 respectively.

The prohibition becomes effective 1 April 2016, as applies to the requirements that lithium ion batteries, UN 3480, PI 965, to be shipped at a state of charge of no more than 30% of their rated capacity, and other changes advised through the addendum to the 57th edition of the IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations (DGR) issued in January of this year.

A further addendum to the DGR will be issued later this week to align with the issuance of Addendum 4 to the ICAO Technical Instructions. The addenda to the DGR are available from the IATA website at:

http://www.iata.org/whatwedo/cargo/dgr/Pages/download.aspx

The final changes for lithium batteries effective 1 April 2016 are as follows.

Changes to the Provisions for Lithium Batteries - Effective 1 April 2016

  1. UN 3480, PI 965, Section IA and IB. Lithium ion cells and batteries must be offered for transport at a state of charge (SoC) not exceeding 30% of their rated design capacity. Cells and/or batteries at a SoC of greater than 30% may only be shipped with the approval of the State of Origin and the State of the Operator under the written conditions established by those authorities.

    UN 3480, PI 965, Section IA and IB are forbidden for carriage on passenger aircraft. All packages must bear the Cargo Aircraft Only label in addition to the other marks and labels required by the Regulations.

    Note: Guidance and methodology for determining the rated capacity can be found in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, 5th Revised Edition, Amend. 1 and Amend. 2, Section 38.3.2.3.
  2. UN 3480, PI 965, Section II. Lithium ion cells and batteries must be offered for transport at a state of charge (SoC) not exceeding 30% of their rated design capacity.

    All packages prepared in accordance with Section II of PI 965 are forbidden for carriage on passenger aircraft. All packages must bear the Cargo Aircraft Only label in addition to the other marks and labels required by the Regulations.

    A shipper is not permitted to offer for transport more than one (1) package prepared according to Section II in any single consignment.

    Not more than one (1) package prepared in accordance with Section II of PI 965 may be placed into an overpack. When the package is placed in an overpack, the lithium battery handling label and Cargo Aircraft Only label required by this packing instruction must either be clearly visible or the label must be affixed on the outside of the overpack and the overpack must be marked with the word "Overpack".
  3. UN 3090, PI 968, Section II. A shipper is not permitted to present for transport more than one (1) package prepared according to Section II in any single consignment.

    Not more than one (1) package prepared in accordance with Section II of PI 968 may be placed into an overpack. When the package is placed in an overpack, the lithium battery handling label and Cargo Aircraft Only label required by this packing instruction must either be clearly visible or the label must be affixed on the outside of the overpack and the overpack must be marked with the word “Overpack”.
  4. Packages prepared according to Section II of PI 965 and PI 968 must be offered to the operator separately from other cargo and must not be loaded into a unit load device (ULD) before being offered to the operator.

You can contact the IATA Dangerous Goods Support team if you have questions or concerns that may not have been addressed in this document at: dangood@iata.org.

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