Industry efforts against misdeclared Litium Batteries shipments
On 11 December, the International Air Transport Association (IATA), in partnership with the International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA), the Global Shippers Forum (GSF), and the International Air Cargo Association (TIACA), announced that they were amplifying their efforts to ensure the safe air transport of lithium batteries.
The organisations also renewed calls for governments to crack down on manufacturers of counterfeit batteries and of mislabelled and non-compliant shipments introduced into the supply chain, by issuing and enforcing criminal sanctions on those responsible.
The campaign includes three specific initiatives: firstly, a new incident reporting and alert system for airlines in form of an industry information sharing platform to target misdeclared consignments of lithium batteries. The reporting system will allow real-time information about dangerous goods incidents to be reported in order to identify and eradicate acts of deliberate or intentional concealment and misdeclaration. Secondly, it includes an industry awareness campaign on the dangers of shipping undeclared and misdeclared lithium batteries, including seminars targeting countries and regions where compliance has been challenging, and an education and awareness program for customs authorities that has been developed in collaboration with the World Customs Organization (WCO). Thirdly, the facilitation of a joined-up industry approach which calls for adoption of a cross-domain approach to include aviation security, manufacturing standards, customs and consumer protection agencies.
Lastly, the associations call on governments to play their role with much stricter enforcement of international regulations to ensure the safe transport of these shipments. The four trade associations urge regulators to follow through with significant fines and penalties for those who circumvent regulations for the transport of lithium batteries.