After a $5 billion dollar recall, Samsung is getting another federal punch. Today, the controversial Galaxy Note 7 is officially banned from airline flights. As of noon, Saturday, the phones are considered a forbidden hazardous material, meaning it's not allowed in airports and especially not on flights. However, as ABC Action News found out, they won't be checking for them on security checkpoints. Relying on more of an honor system.
Early this month, an overheated Note 7 filled a Baltimore- bound Southwest flight full of smoke. Also, prompting an evacuation. The phone getting a bad rep since reports of battery failures and fires first started in September. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the South Korean tech giant has received 96 reports of the Note 7s overheating in the U.S. Some of those include replacement phones.
"It's really scary and I'm glad they are banning it," said Savannah Brantley
She's picking up a relative from Tampa International Airport. While she did hear about the ban, what she didn't know is the Transportation Security Administration won't be searching for the phones at checkpoints.
TSA says that's because this is a "safety issue, not a security issue."
"See and I think they should," says Amanda Lebarre, "I'm not offended by going through security. I'd rather they be safe than sorry."
Lebarre is on her way to Texas. She's got an older Samsung and is glad she didn't make the upgrade. She insists TSA could and should do more. Lebarre says she'll be on the lookout herself.
Meanwhile, the TSA says, if an officer sees the phone they'll tell the passenger about the ban. They won't allow the passenger to pass without losing the phone. However, officers will not confiscate the device. Anyone caught trying to sneak them in on a flight could face fines and even criminal prosecution