Traveling with a digital camera

Loose lithium batteries prohibited by U.S. DOT

Written by Gail Bjork

U.S. Transportation Department prohibits travelers from packing loose lithium batteries in checked-in luggage

Lithium batteriesNo loose lithium batteries in checked in luggage

Since January 2008, the United States Transportation Department prohibits travelers from packing loose lithium batteries in luggage that is checked in at airports. There is a risk that these batteries will overheat and cause a fire on board.

If the lithium batteries are installed in electronic devices such as digital cameras, mobile phones, personal digital assistants and notebook computers, they are allowed in checked luggage and on board.

Battery-powered devices and spare batteries can be kept in carry-on baggage. But spare batteries should be kept in their original packaging or packaged in a way that prevent them from coming in contact with other batteries and metal.

Preparing loose batteries

Place electrical or any non-metallic adhesive tape across the battery contacts to isolate terminals. The tape prevents short-circuiting. Putting each battery in its own separate bag will also isolate the terminals.

Information subject to revision

This information is subject to revision so visit the Transportation Security Administration website for up-to-date information and tips about safe air travel with batteries and devices, as well as safe practices to employ when packing and traveling.

Other topics covered include: Liquid Rules, Prohibited Items, Acceptable Identification at the Checkpoint, Checkpoint Friendly” Laptop Bags, Special Items, Baggage Locks, Travelers with Disabilities and Medical Conditions, and Traveling with Children.

About the author

Gail Bjork

Gail Bjork, who is passionate about digital photography, is the owner and editor of Digicamhelp.Gail is the author of three illustrated ebooks about digital photography. A number of her photos and digital photography related articles appear at other websites.In 2006, a series of her photos, People in the Louvre, were exhibited at the Underground Photo Gallery
in Iisalmi Finland. Eight of her photos taken in the Florida scrub are on permanent exhibition at Parrish Medical Center in Titusville, Florida.Gail served twelve years as an elected member of The School Board of Palm Beach County, Florida, one of the largest school districts in the U.S. She has also been the editor of a small town newspaper and a free-lance writer. Gail and her husband owned and ran several small businesses.