US could extend laptop ban to flights coming from Europe

The Department of Homeland Security has already banned large devices from 10 airports

Department of Homeland Security

[David Goldman / AP/Press Association Images]

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is considering extending its ban on large electronic devices to flights coming from Europe into the US.

Back in March, the US announced laptop restrictions on flights originating from ten airports including the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey due to fears that a concealed bomb could be installed in electronic devices taken onto aircrafts.

Britain followed suit shortly after with restrictions on a slightly different set of routes. 

Donald Trump’s administration now seems likely to extend the ban even further affecting flights coming from European airports. 

The Department of Homeland Security is in the process of reviewing how to ensure lithium batteries stored in luggage holds do not explode in midair. Officials from the DHS are planing to meet with airline industry officials today to discuss security issues.

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly is expected to give a classified briefing to senators about domestic threats and airline issues. 

A spokesperson for the DHS, Dave Lapan said that Kelly "hasn't made a decision but we continue to evaluate the threat environment and have engaged in discussions with airline representatives and other stakeholders about the threat."

European regulators have warned that placing what could be potentially hundreds of devices in the hold on long-haul flights could compromise safety by increasing the risk of fire from poorly deactivated lithium-ion batteries.