So I’m on the fourth flight this week. I’m finally on my way home (yay me!) and having spent the last forty minutes in the Qantas club drinking away I’m pretty jovial.
That is until I sat down, put my dopod into flight mode and started to read a pdf of the project documents I received just 5 minutes prior to my leaving the office.
All of a sudden I’m accosted by the flight attendant about my PDA being on at all during take off. Now, why is this such an issue? Someone explain this to me please!
It is impossible (yes, I’m going to say it!) impossible for *any* electrical device that is not transmitting massive amounts of radio waves to affect an airplane. Oh, and by massive, I mean like a personal radar jammer, portable studio transmitter or ET’s interstellar mobile.
Case in point, the only reason they ask you to not use a cell phone on a plane is that at over 400 clicks an hour, you are going to seriously screw with the cell towers as they roam and try to keep up with you passing overhead at such speeds. The planes are fine.
Not convinced? The supposed passengers of the 9/11 disaster were calling home prior to the crash … so if that’s so … then why didn’t those planes go all over the place and react to all of those calls?
So, I can use my device in flight mode while *flying* but not while taking off nor landing? Ridiculous!
How does an ipod, a gameboy, an ebook reader or even a tiny electronic board game (yes, those kids were asked to turn that off in exchange for a freddo frog and a join the dots activity sheet instead!) affect that plane in any way?
And another thing, how those having your window shutter closed affect your flight? I mean a seat in the recline position can make the passenger behind you uncomfortable … but a blind?! Yet the flight attendent demanded that all blinds be open during takeoff and landing … go figure!
I feel like sometimes it’s just the perky little power hungry bitc…err…flight attendant just trying to prove that she’s there to do more than serve pre-packaged meals, pretzels and drinks while occasionally propping a cushion (if she thinks the passenger is cute or sexy) or going through the empty motions of the “safety demonstration”.
Maybe this is a challenge for Mythbusters! They can prove once and for all that these electronics do not affect airline travel (and for bonus points they don’t when they are fully on and aren’t in flight mode!) and as an extra treat – why it is impossible for a liquid explosives situation to occur!
Let’s stop being ridiculous about this crap! Must we actually live our lives and dictate our behaviors by acquiescing to states and concepts of paranoia, ignorance and mindless rules?
When can we expect that some common sense and logic will kick in?
At the very least I’d like to see some basic training of the staff being initiated. For example, putting a device in flight mode means that you do not need to physically turn said device off.
While I’m at it, can we have a special course run by the airlines for frequent flyers that gives us a little badge that denotes the fact that we have seen, heard, read and can even now physically demonstrate all of the safety procedures on an airplane, inclusive of the emergency exit seats, so let us be?
Maybe this same course will also denote that we are more than aware of the devices that can and cannot affect the operation of a flight instrument and thus stop bugging us to turn the buggers off!