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Stiffer penalties to tacklet mis-labelling of lithium ion batteries

GOVERNMENTS are being urged to fine and impose penalties on manufacturers that make counterfeit batteries or mis-label lithium battery shipments, according to IATA, FIATA, Tiaca and the Global Shippers' Forum

19 December 2019 - 19:00

GOVERNMENTS are being urged to fine and impose penalties on manufacturers that make counterfeit batteries or mis-label lithium battery shipments, according to IATA, FIATA, Tiaca and the Global Shippers' Forum.

The aim is to prevent the transport of mis-labelled, non-compliant and potentially dangerous lithium ion batteries, reported UK's The Loadstar.



IATA claims consumer demand for lithium batteries is growing by 17 per cent annually, which has led to 'an increase in the number of incidents in which rogue shippers are not complying,' said IATA's senior vice president for cargo and security Nick Careen.



'The industry is uniting to raise awareness of the need to comply. This includes the launching of an incident reporting tool so that information on rogue shippers is shared. And we are asking governments to get much tougher with fines and penalties.'



The incident reporting tool is an information-sharing platform which will target instances of misdeclared consignments. The system works in real time and allows participants to report any 'acts of deliberate or intentional concealment and misdeclaration.'



The partners are also launching a campaign on the dangers of undeclared or misreported shipments, via a series of seminars globally, but targeting countries which have a particular problem. They are also starting an education and awareness programme for customs authorities in collaboration with the World Customs Organisation.



A third aspect of the campaign is supporting a 'joined-up' approach. The UK, New Zealand, France and the Netherlands have an initiative to adopt a 'cross-domain approach to include aviation security, manufacturing standards, customs and consumer protection agencies.'



The partnering associations have also called on governments to enforce rules more strictly.



'Safety is aviation's top priority,' said IATA's global head of cargo Glyn Hughes. 'Airlines, shippers and manufacturers have worked hard to establish rules that ensure lithium batteries can be carried safely. But the rules are only effective if they are enforced and backed-up by significant penalties.



'Government authorities must step up and take responsibility for stopping rogue producers and exporters. Abuses of dangerous goods shipping regulations, which place aircraft and passenger safety at risk, must be criminalised.'


WORLD SHIPPING

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