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Lawmakers block safety rules for battery shipments

December 4, 2011 • Business


FILE – In this Sept. 5, 2010 file photo, a general view of the military compound where a 747-400 Boeing cargo plane operated by United Parcel Service Inc crashed in Dubai. Lawmakers, responding to pleas from industry and foreign governments, have tentatively agreed to block the Obama administration from requiring lithium batteries be treated as hazardous cargo because of the danger of fires during flight. (AP Photo/File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawmakers, responding to pleas from industry and foreign governments, have tentatively agreed to block the Obama administration from requiring that air shipments of lithium batteries be treated as hazardous cargo because of the danger of fires during flight.

The deal came in talks on a long-term funding bill for the Federal Aviation Administration, Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., told The Associated Press. The bill will effectively block new battery-shipment rules by insisting the U.S. follow international standards, which are less stringent, said Rahall, top Democrat on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

Pilot unions said the international standards don’t provide enough safety and are weaker than rules the administration proposed nearly two years ago but never made Login to read more

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