Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Accidentally "Smuggled" Batteries from China

Well this was unexpected. I ordered some small batteries from China several weeks ago.  The other day, a package arrived.

I opened the padded envelope to find two cheap plastic cars.  "What the hell?  I didn't order any plastic cars from China via Swiss Post," I thought.  But the address is correct ... the supplier must have messed up my order.  (That would be a first - I've had a couple things not show up, but never be flat out wrong.)

"Huh, there's something rattling inside here," was my next thought.

I broke open the cheap, hollow plastic car to discover a battery inside each.


Well, I haven't seen that before.

I suspect shipping in this way is due to recent changes the USA has made to shipping regulations.  The USA says lithium-polymer cells can no longer be shipped by air, except as part of a device (i.e. installed as part of something else.)  Perhaps this is an effort to obey that regulation in letter, if not in spirit.