WASHINGTON – Forget sending that 21st century care package to troops overseas. The Post Office will soon ban international shipping for iPads or Kindles.
The move follows recent concern over lithium batteries found in tablets, smartphones and other electronic devices, that some international trade agencies believe could explode while aboard a plane. Companies that make these products currently charge extra for precautionary measures in shipping, mitigating the risk of an explosion, FastCompany.com reports.
Explosions from lithium batteries have been connected with at least two cargo plane crashes since 2006, according to FastCompany.
USPS, facing potential default after their $3.2 billion loss last quarter, made the decision following deliberations between the International Civil Aviation Organization and the Universal Postal Union over the potential hazard. Until international standards on shipping the batteries is put into place, the Post Office will not allow them aboard their overseas flights, according to a department release.
The Post Office believes it might be able to lift the ban by early 2013.
Those who wish to send a product with a lithium battery abroad will have to pay more for a private shipping service.