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  • FAA to Relax In-Flight Electronics Rules


    For months we've heard chatter about the F.A.A. possibly expanding permissions for in-flight use of today's leading consumer electronics devices, including Apple's iPad.

    As recently as last month, sources close to the Federal Aviation Administration suggested that the agency intends to relax the rules for ereaders and tablet devices during takeoff and landing.

    Originally Posted by :
    For fliers, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday, the new rules would probably represent an end to familiar warnings to turn off and stow all electronic devices.
    A high-level advisory panel to the agency has prepared draft recommendations for the F.A.A. to review.

    Cellphone calls are expected to remain off-limits, however. "The draft doesn't make any recommendations regarding phone use because the FAA didn't authorize the panel to delve into that particularly controversial area," the report reads.

    If the FAA does not ease its standards, the advisory group worries, "confidence in the FAA and the [industry's] ability to integrate personal electronic device usage will erode."

    As of this writing, there is no confirmation of when the relaxed rules may take effect.

    Source: WSJ
    This article was originally published in forum thread: FAA to Relax In-Flight Electronics Rules started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 19 Comments
    1. bigboyz's Avatar
      bigboyz -
      I remember Myth Busters and they wanted to test a cell phone call on a remote airplane and they were denied. I mean, will a call really crash a plane? Has anyone done it??..do tell..
    1. six2pelham's Avatar
      six2pelham -
      Quote Originally Posted by bigboyz View Post
      I remember Myth Busters and they wanted to test a cell phone call on a remote airplane and they were denied. I mean, will a call really crash a plane? Has anyone done it??..do tell..
      I'm thinking the issue revolves more around the fact that there's a higher percentage of crashes during take off and landing so they want to make sure that they have everyone's attention.

      Just my guess!
    1. Jabbacks's Avatar
      Jabbacks -
      @bigboyz, Dunno, but cellphones are known to detonate bombs.

      Dunno but cellphones are known to detonate bombs remotely!
    1. Scotty Manley Silberhorn's Avatar
      Scotty Manley Silberhorn -
      Quote Originally Posted by bigboyz View Post
      I remember Myth Busters and they wanted to test a cell phone call on a remote airplane and they were denied. I mean, will a call really crash a plane? Has anyone done it??..do tell..
      Would you take a risk of screwing up instruments in the planes? You can wait to call someone after you land.
    1. KraXik's Avatar
      KraXik -
      I've never made a call on take off or landing. But I've never switched my phone off and push will always be on.
    1. cmwade77's Avatar
      cmwade77 -
      Quote Originally Posted by bigboyz View Post
      I remember Myth Busters and they wanted to test a cell phone call on a remote airplane and they were denied. I mean, will a call really crash a plane? Has anyone done it??..do tell..
      No, common sense tells us that it will not crash a plane, but common sense also tells us that if cell phones are allowed to be used on planes, flights that are currently relatively quite will become very noisy, very quickly. So, it makes sense to ban the use of voice calls on flights.

      There may be technical hurdles (particularly on international flights) as well, such as which cell tower does it connect to, when do you get charged roaming, would traveling at the speeds that planes do cause issues when switching between towers, etc.

      These technical hurdles would probably apply to both voice and data, so until those can be ironed out, it makes sense to ban data on flights as well. Can you imagine getting home and having a $2,000 cell phone bill, because you didn't know you were connected to an international cell tower and were surfing the web?

      So, I really think banning cell phones on flights is more of a practical matter than a safety issue, but if they came out and said that, people would be screaming to allow their use.

      Now, as for other electronic devices, I think they should probably be allowed during take off and landing, so long as they are not bulky enough to become a projectile in an emergency.
    1. k1653d's Avatar
      k1653d -
      The rule is so dumb. Terrorists should just bring a bunch of cell phones on the airplane and make calls if it could really crash the plane.
    1. Jato_BZ's Avatar
      Jato_BZ -
      One of the guys I work with always leaves his S2 on when we fly...dam freaking annoying! Busy texting! He's like nah it's a myth that planes are affected! He said he read it on Google! ><
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jato_BZ View Post
      One of the guys I work with always leaves his S2 on when we fly...dam freaking annoying! Busy texting! He's like nah it's a myth that planes are affected! He said he read it on Google! ><
      He gets network at 35k'?
    1. Jato_BZ's Avatar
      Jato_BZ -
      Quote Originally Posted by vinaygoel2000 View Post
      He gets network at 35k'?
      Never really asked, we fly at 30K+ in the 737/747s but if we fly in the ATR's it's not at that height. Either way he leaves it on transmit/receive when fly...we thought about getting someone to call his cellphone! He's gone rogue...
    1. ThatOneProfile's Avatar
      ThatOneProfile -
      If it were a true risk. They would most definitely not make it past the metal detectors.
    1. Donnutt's Avatar
      Donnutt -
      I've been on plenty of flights when people were still calling or texting while the plane took off. The first time I was worried, but nothing happened.

      What will Apple do about Airplane mode though???
    1. andygev35's Avatar
      andygev35 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThatOneProfile View Post
      If it were a true risk. They would most definitely not make it past the metal detectors.
      Well, I guess since plastic explosives can make it through a metal detector, it isn't dangerous either, right?
    1. ThatOneProfile's Avatar
      ThatOneProfile -
      Quote Originally Posted by andygev35 View Post
      Well, I guess since plastic explosives can make it through a metal detector, it isn't dangerous either, right?
      Since when did you hear of someone blowing up a plane with plastic explosives? You just love making things up huh?
    1. andygev35's Avatar
      andygev35 -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThatOneProfile View Post
      Since when did you hear of someone blowing up a plane with plastic explosives? You just love making things up huh?
      I was showing you the flaw in your logic, but since you want to be a smartass, Pan-Am flight 103 over Lockerbie Scotland is the most well-known... (But not to you obviously)
    1. Scotty Manley Silberhorn's Avatar
      Scotty Manley Silberhorn -
      Great now that this conversation has switched topics. Everyone on here is going to get a visit from the NSA.
    1. grantskier's Avatar
      grantskier -
      Quote Originally Posted by bigboyz View Post
      I remember Myth Busters and they wanted to test a cell phone call on a remote airplane and they were denied. I mean, will a call really crash a plane? Has anyone done it??..do tell..
      I'm a pilot, and have made a call on a short distant flight to a friends while in flight (I had another person have control of the plane at the time). Worked fine (low cell signal though), no issues with instruments or the like.

      The cell signal is there anyways, if it interfered, you would have issues even with people aboard without phones.
    1. andygev35's Avatar
      andygev35 -
      Again, my point was totally missed...