A smartphone caught fire on a flight in India.
The Indigo Airbus was flying from the industrial city of Dibrugarh in north-east India to India’s capital city Delhi when the phone went into thermal runaway.
This happens when one cell in a battery overheats it can produce enough heat – up to 900°C (1652°F) – to cause adjacent cells to overheat. This can cause a lithium battery fire to flare repeatedly and they are then very difficult to put out as they burn at such high temperatures.
The Aviation Herald reports that in this instance cabin crew did manage to douse the fire and kept the phone away from other passengers for the rest of the flight.
The aircraft continued on to Delhi where it landed safely.
Thousands of planes now carry an award-winning fire mitigation bag called an AvSax on board to deal with such emergencies caused by thermal runaway.
AvSax (http://avsax.com/) are the world’s best-selling fire containment bag for PEDs on aircraft and are now on more than 15,373 aircraft operated by 80 airline companies.
They have been used 33 times to deal with emergencies since the start of 2017 and every time they have been deployed the aircraft has been able to complete its journey safely with no need to divert or make an emergency landing. Diversions can be very costly to the airline company and can even run into hundreds of thousands of dollars.
AvSax won the prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the UK in 2018, the highest business award it’s possible to get.
Many air ambulance helicopters in the UK now carry AvSax. More than 20 helicopters operated by specialist aerial emergency medical services company Babcock were equipped with AvSax following a detailed look into the possible risks posed by lithium-ion batteries on aircraft.