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S. Korea places temporary ban on in-flight use of Samsung Galaxy Note 7

All Headlines 18:08 September 10, 2016

SEOUL, Sept. 10 (Yonhap) -- The use of Samsung Electronics Co.'s latest Galaxy Note 7 phablets on flights will be prohibited at least for some time as the local government placed a de facto ban on in-flight use of the new smartphone found to have a battery problem.

In a released statement, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport said it was "recommending" users of the Galaxy Note 7 phablets keep the phone turned off at all times while aboard an airplane and also not to recharge the phone in flight.

The transportation ministry also asked people not to put their Galaxy Note 7 phones in their checked-in luggage.

The decision to ban in-flight use of the new smartphone came about a week after Samsung Electronics announced a global recall, affecting some 1.5 million units of the Galaxy Note 7 sold so far, noting that the phone's battery might catch fire when being recharged.

However, the so-called recommendations apparently come with more force than what usually accompanies a recommendation, as a ministry official said airlines or their flight attendants may have passengers who refuse to comply with their recommendations removed from the flight.

The ministry decision also came only two days after it said it had no plans to impose a ban on the in-flight use of Galaxy Note 7 smartphones.

"Many other countries have made similar recommendations banning the use of the Galaxy Note 7 on flights. The government decided to follow suit partly because the use of the phone might create unnecessary fears for other passengers," a ministry official said, while speaking on the condition of anonymity.

bdk@yna.co.kr
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