A select number of MacBook Pro laptops are now officially banned on flights, U.S. airline safety regulators decided after Apple recently confirmed that some units had batteries that posed a fire hazard.
U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement that it was "aware of the recalled batteries" found in some MacBook Pro laptops, and that it alerted major U.S. airlines about the recall.
As Bloomberg reports, The agency also cautioned airlines and asked them to follow 2016 safety instructions for goods with recalled batteries. Which is to say the affected laptops should not be carried on flights as cargo or as carry-on baggage by passengers.
MacBook Pro Banned On Flights
More specifically, the FAA banned mid-2015 15-inch MacBook Pro models. In June, Apple announced a voluntary recall and replacement program for models sold between September 2015 and February 2017 as these units risked containing batteries susceptible to overheating, and thereby posing a fire safety risk.
Affected laptops that have yet to receive replacement batteries are not allowed on flights as cargo or carry-on baggage, which, as mentioned, is standard operating procedure.
Earlier this month, the European Union Aviation Safety also warned European airlines to make sure affected MacBook Pro models are switched off and not used during flights.
Battery Replacement Program
Apple has encouraged customers who own the affected models to stop using their laptops until they can take the steps to have its batteries replaced. Users who are uncertain if their model is affected may go to Apple's website and enter their Mac's serial number to check if their laptop needs a replacement battery.
Apple has been offering free replacement batteries since June and has notified affected customers via email urging them to bring in their MacBook Pro models for due repair. To be clear, 2015 MacBook Pro laptops that have a fresh battery are allowed on flights as normal.
Recently, four airlines with cargo operations — TUI Group Airlines, Thomas Cook Airlines, Air Italy, and Air Transat — implemented a ban barring laptops from being brought onto the carrier's planes as cargo, as Bloomberg reports.
"Please note that the 15-inch Apple MacBook Pro laptop, sold between mid-2015 to February-2017 is prohibited on board any of our mandate carriers," a TCE operations coordinator wrote to employees.
Is your laptop affected by this ban? As always, if you have anything to share, feel free to sound them off in the comments section below!