A fire broke out in the cabin of a V Air passenger liner bound for Japan on Friday night after a portable battery in a passenger’s carry-on luggage spontaneously caught fire in the first incident of its kind affecting a Taiwanese air carrier, the Aviation Safety Council (ASC) said yesterday.
“This was the first incident of a mobile device power source triggering a fire on a domestic airliner in flight,” council executive director Thomas Wang (王興中) said.
He said that between 1991 and last year there have been more than 170 incidents involving lithium battery explosions on commercial aircraft worldwide, but this was the first case involving a Taiwanese air carrier.
Photo: Copy by Chu Pei-hsiung, Taipei Times
“The council plans to investigate the case,” he said.
The device in question was a lithium battery made in China, the Civil Aeronautics Administration said, adding that it was not immediately clear what type of electronic device it was used to power.
Wang said that the battery did not catch fire because it was on an aircraft in flight, and it would have caught fire even if it had not been brought onto the plane.
There have been discussions on whether mobile power sources should be allowed on airplanes, he said, but cell phones also have lithium batteries and “the possibility of banning them is not high.”
Current practice among the world’s airlines is that mobile power sources — as long as they are kept in carry-on luggage — can be brought aboard aircraft, he said.
Flight ZV252 took off from Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport for Haneda Airport at 10:26pm on Friday.
The fire was put out shortly after it began, and the battery was placed in a bucket of water to ensure that it would not reignite.
All the aircraft’s 161 passengers and crew members were unharmed in the incident.
Due to safety concerns, the captain flew the aircraft back to Taoyuan airport.
The aircraft arrived at the airport at 11:21pm and was confirmed not to have been damaged. The budget air carrier, in consideration of the lingering smell of smoke, arranged for the passengers to take another flight, which left at 12:30am yesterday.
The airline said that the council had confirmed the safety of the aircraft before it was put back into service yesterday.
When the crew members return to Taiwan, they will be questioned so that officials can learn more about the fire, the council said.
‘VIRUS DIPLOMACY’: The nation’s expertise in handling COVID-19 was among the reasons that it should not be excluded from the WHO, the European Parliament said The European Parliament this week passed resolutions that support Taiwan’s bid to participate in the WHO and its intention to negotiate a trade pact with Taiwan. During its plenary session from Monday to Thursday, the parliament approved resolutions on the foreign policy consequences of the COVID-19 outbreak and the EU’s trade policy, parts of which were viewed as friendly toward Taiwan by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In a statement yesterday, the ministry welcomed the passage of the resolutions and thanked the parliament for its support for Taiwan. In the first resolution, the parliament cited Beijing’s increasing threats to Taiwan, the crackdown on
The gig began with a nun chanting on stage, but suddenly erupted into a wall of noise unleashed by distorted guitars and screamed sutras — the unique sound of Taiwan’s first Buddhist death metal band. The nation has a vibrant metal scene, but few outfits are quite as eye-catching as Dharma (達摩樂隊), a band that aims to deliver enlightenment via the medium of throaty eight-string guitars and guttural roars. Dressed in robes — black, of course — they use traditional Sanskrit sutras as lyrics, but everything else screams death metal, from bloody face paint on stage to growled vocals, relentless riffs and
LOOPHOLES: The people behind biased media content produced by a Chinese network, likely without sending staff to Taiwan, remain anonymous, a source said Beijing’s latest attempt at psychological warfare through heavily biased online media is aimed at sowing discord and polarizing Taiwanese society, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said. The council’s comment came in response to Chinese network Southeast Television, which late last month began broadcasting an online program featuring commentary by Taiwanese unification supporters that authorities suspect was filmed illegally in Taiwan. To circumvent cross-strait regulations, the broadcaster collaborated with online service provider Baidu to air the series titles Diverse Voices From the Taiwan Strait (台海百家說). Only Taiwanese are shown on camera, without revealing the host, interviewer or production team. In one video, political commentator and
A petition has been launched calling for harsher drunk driving penalties in South Korea after a Taiwanese doctoral student was killed by an inebriated driver earlier this month in Seoul. On the evening of Nov. 6, 28-year-old theology student Tseng Yi-lin (曾以琳) was walking home from her professor’s house — crossing the road at a green pedestrian light — when she was hit by a drunk driver. South Korean authorities told Tseng’s parents that the driver would receive a lighter punishment “because the accident happened while the perpetrator was drunk,” the petition said. In response, friends of Tseng on Monday initiated a petition