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Old 09-24-2013, 11:33 AM   #1
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FAA may allow use of some Electronic Devices

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Originally Posted by AIAA
FAA Reportedly Will Allow Expanded Use Of Electronic Devices.

The CBS Evening News reported that transportation safety analyst Mark Rosenker “fully expects the FAA to lift the ban on computer games, e-book readers, DVD players and many electronics during takeoff and landing.” Rosenker says that the FAA has “only had anecdotal evidence that in any way shape or form that it somewhat interfered with the aircraft’s performance.” CBS notes that talking on cell phones will still not be allowed because phones emit strong signals that could interfere with planes.

NBC Nightly News reported that “the FAA is preparing to recommend that airlines allow a select number of devices to remain on during takeoff and landing” but will not allow the use of wifi below 10,000 feet or the use of cell phones or the transmission of text messages. NBC noted that the changes would be implemented some time next year.

USA Today (9/24, Jones) reports that the FAA advisory panel will meet today and tomorrow and will provide a report to the FAA by the end of the month. The FAA said in a statement Monday that “we tasked a government-industry group to examine the safety issues and the feasibility of changing the current restrictions. . . . We will wait for the group to finish its work before we determine next steps.” USA Today notes that the in-flight use of cell phones remains banned by the FCC. Meanwhile, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) said in a statement that she was “not breaking out my iPad in celebration just yet. Today’s reports are good news only if they’re followed by a quick and logical timeline for implementation by the FAA, which I’m hopeful will be the case.”

Another report from USA Today (9/23, Jones) also reports on the reaction by fliers to the news. Most fliers were in favor of the change, although some were concerned that their peers would be distracted before takeoff and would not pay attention to instructions given by flight attendants.

Bloomberg News (9/24, Levin, Keane) reports that four out of ten passengers surveyed by the Consumer Electronics Association wanted to use electronic devices during landings. Meanwhile, airlines have been split, with Delta endorsing a change while United “said it preferred no changes because they’d be difficult to enforce.”

Also reporting are The Hill (9/24, Laing), CNN (9/24), FOX News (9/23), Time (9/23, Newman), the Washington Times (9/24, Chasmar), the Daily Beast (9/24), AVweb (9/24, Grady), and other media sources.

Risk That Electronic Device Could Bring Down Airplane Reportedly Low. CNN (9/24, Ahlers, Marsh) also reports that one-third of passengers have left an electronic device on during a flight according to a Consumer Electronics Association Survey. CNN reports that the experts they surveyed found that the risk that a phone could interfere with the functioning of a plane is low and that the NTSB “has never issued a recommendation about such devices on planes.” However, some worry that even if an electronic device can’t directly “bring down the plane,” interference from such a device could distract a pilot during a critical phase of the flight.
Begin the gnashing of teeth.
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Old 09-24-2013, 11:44 AM   #2
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Why gnashing? This is good news. I've never turned off my phone during takeoff or landing and I have yet to die in a ball of fire.
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Old 09-24-2013, 12:07 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
Why gnashing? This is good news. I've never turned off my phone during takeoff or landing and I have yet to die in a ball of fire.
What a shame, that you never turned it off like you were supposed to. I always did.
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Old 09-24-2013, 12:08 PM   #4
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Old 09-24-2013, 12:53 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
Why gnashing? This is good news.
More than one thread on this topic in the past has devolved into baseless flaming because some people intrinsically believe that government rules are always for a reason. In other words, many have accused those who ignore stupid rules as irresponsibly trying to bring down aircraft.
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Old 09-24-2013, 01:05 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by MovieBird View Post
More than one thread on this topic in the past has devolved into baseless flaming because some people intrinsically believe that government rules are always for a reason. In other words, many have accused those who ignore stupid rules as irresponsibly trying to bring down aircraft.
Haha, who knew? If you consider that there is probably at least one person like me on every flight, then it's a wonder the entire world's air fleet hasn't crashed into the ocean by now.
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Old 09-24-2013, 01:12 PM   #7
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:01 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MovieBird View Post
More than one thread on this topic in the past has devolved into baseless flaming because some people intrinsically believe that government rules are always for a reason. In other words, many have accused those who ignore stupid rules as irresponsibly trying to bring down aircraft.
Some, on the other hand, have felt that any changes in the rules should be based on science, research and the understanding of experts in the field, and that the opinion of those with no relevant education or experience is of little value.

If the rules are going to be eased for valid reasons, after adequate study, then I'm all for it - but let's not fall into the trap of accepting anecdote and uneducated opinion as evidence.

/JB
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:05 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
Why gnashing? This is good news. I've never turned off my phone during takeoff or landing and I have yet to die in a ball of fire.
It doesn't say they will allow phones to remain on. It says the use of cell phones and text messaging will still not be allowed, and no wi-fi under 10,000 ft.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:09 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by jbjb View Post
Some, on the other hand, have felt that any changes in the rules should be based on science, research and the understanding of experts in the field, and that the opinion of those with no relevant education or experience is of little value.

If the rules are going to be eased for valid reasons, after adequate study, then I'm all for it - but let's not fall into the trap of accepting anecdote and uneducated opinion as evidence.

/JB
Exactly. In fact, the article states that people's biggest concerns are fellow passengers being distracted and not paying attention to emergency instructions prior to takeoff.

Kind of like getting distracted making assumptions while reading the article I suppose.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:10 PM   #11
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I've always wondered why they never bothered trying to make the interior of the cabin (as opposed to the cockpit) into a Faraday cage. Block all outbound transmissions, and keep the cockpit electronics safe.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:14 PM   #12
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Exactly. In fact, the article states that people's biggest concerns are fellow passengers being distracted and not paying attention to emergency instructions prior to takeoff.

Kind of like getting distracted making assumptions while reading the article I suppose.
Hmmm... a Kindle is distracting, but today's newspaper isn't?
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:16 PM   #13
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Hmmm... a Kindle is distracting, but today's newspaper isn't?
On the flights I've been on (admittedly not many) they asked folks to put away all devices and also paper books and magazines, etc. :shrugs:
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:28 PM   #14
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Some, on the other hand, have felt that any changes in the rules should be based on science, research and the understanding of experts in the field, and that the opinion of those with no relevant education or experience is of little value.

If the rules are going to be eased for valid reasons, after adequate study, then I'm all for it - but let's not fall into the trap of accepting anecdote and uneducated opinion as evidence.

/JB
Seems backward to me. The rules were implemented without valid reason or adequate study, simply because somebody thought there was a minor possibility that something could happen. So anecdote and uneducated opinion were enough to create bureaucracy, but not to remove it.

Simple common sense (and fear of liability) should have had the aircraft manufacturers do the science long ago: and then ensured that no passenger electronics could interfere with the aircraft systems, precisely because there will always be those who don't turn them off.
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Old 09-24-2013, 02:34 PM   #15
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On the flights I've been on (admittedly not many) they asked folks to put away all devices and also paper books and magazines, etc. :shrugs:
I've never been told to put aways books and magazines, and I've taken 7 flights since getting an e-reader, and only been asked to turn it off once.

And why shouldn't I be distracted when they do their pep talk, anyway? By the time the cabin crew get to that, I know where my exits are, where my lifejacket is, and who nearby might need assistance with an oxygen mask. I'm not the problem there—it's far more likely to be someone unfamiliar enough with air travel that they paid rabid attention to the announcements.
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