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Camera Battery Explodes at Airport, Sparking Panic


Orlando International Airport received a scare yesterday when some travelers heard what appeared to be a loud gunshot. After the commotion had settled down, it turns out that one person’s lithium ion camera battery had exploded.

Local ABC news station WVTV9 reports that after the loud bang was heard, law enforcement quickly responded and determined that it wasn’t a shot fired. The Orlando Police Department soon posted a Tweet to reassure those at the airport:

After further investigation, both the police and the airport announced that a battery in a camera had exploded in a bag after overheating, and that the bag was smoldering when discovered:

Many travelers who were startled by the commotion had already evacuated the terminals and needed to be re-screened at the security checkpoint, causing extremely long lines and delays.

Some turned to social media to vent:

This latest incident is bad news for photographers who are already frustrated with airport security in the US tightening its policies regarding cameras and other large electronics.

Security checkpoints began requiring a separate screening for cameras back in July, and the US is now urging airlines to ban cameras in checked bags due to fears of camera batteries exploding and causing catastrophic fires.

A battery explosion like this at the nation’s 13th busiest airport shows that the concerns may be justified.

Image credits: Header illustration based on images by Michael Gray, flaticon/freepik, and Designmodo