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News > USPS restricts shipping of lithium batteries
USPS restricts shipping of lithium batteries

Posted 5/18/2012   Updated 5/18/2012 Email story   Print story


by Airman 1st Class Zachary L. Vucic
Defense Media Activity

5/18/2012 - FORT GEORGE G. MEADE Md.  -- The United States Postal Service no longer allows the mailing of lithium batteries to or from international destinations, including Army post offices, fleet post offices and diplomatic post offices.

Affected items will be lithium-metal or lithium-ion batteries in electronic devices sent on commercial passenger aircraft to international destinations, said Darlene S. Casey, a senior public relations representative at the U.S. Postal Service Headquarters in Washington, D.C. As USPS uses commercial passenger air transportation for outbound international shipments, there are currently no exceptions.

The change is required due to new standards implemented by the International Civil Aviation Organization and the Universal Postal Union.

The restriction does not apply to air cargo shipments, officials said. Therefore, private shipping companies, such as DHL, FedEx and UPS, will continue to move shipments of lithium batteries and electronic devices containing lithium batteries, officials said. Items will be shipped per ICAO regulations as outlined in the International Air Transportation Association dangerous goods manual.

USPS is working with expert companies and organizations to determine if any exceptions can be developed prior to January 2013, Casey said. Further announcements will be made should USPS be able to accept lithium batteries in certain types of international mail shipments as soon as any new options become available.

If USPS is able to determine any exceptions prior to January 2013, all customers will immediately be notified -- customers can check www.usps.com for any service updates, Casey said. Types of electronic devices containing lithium batteries can be seen here.

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