Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Safety In The Air

On 25 April 2010 an Emirates Airline B777 encountered severe turbulence and 20 passengers out of 350 were injured, the aircraft landed safely. On every flight of every airline the PA announcement recommends that one keeps his/her seat belt on while seated, precisely to avoid incidents like this one.

In the late 1970s and early 1980s Lounges on airliners were the in thing. Lockheed had lower deck lounges on some of their L1011s and Boeing had lounges on their B747 upper deck. With time the fad disappeared mostly because lounges took up space and weighed heavily and they had to give way to economic realities, this same space was used for cargo and/or seats. Even lower deck galleys disappeared to give way to cargo space.

In the 2000s Airbus comes in with the A380 and sells the aircraft as one where you can have lounges, gyms, bowling alleys and shopping areas (click here) with passengers walking around. Fortunately most of these did not materialize.

Great looking lounge areas for the use of the First and Business Class passengers are very unsafe during an encounter with severe turbulence with passengers standing or sitting around the lounge. They will probably bounce off the ceiling, literally.

It is time to go back to basics and have a review of how safe are these lounges and act accordingly.

1 comment:

  1. Agreed Oussama; Your recommendation must be carefully studied by aircraft manufacturers together with Safety regulators and institutions. We have to deal with aircraft interior specifications and take them more seriously. This was the first time that economic considerations worked out fine for the sake and benefit of Safety in the Air.
    However; the Emirates incident in particular must be further studied as this was not a "normal", usual and expectedly unexpected turbulence, as I learned that it made the aircraft to loose 15000 ft, yes Sir three zeros!
    All the best,,

    Proudly a follower of your Blog,,,



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