Sunday, 28 September 2014

EASA permits use of PEDs throughout the flight

The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) announced that it permits the use of Portable Electronic Devices (PEDs), such as laptops, palmtops, cell phones etc. on board the aircraft throughout the flight, provided that the aircraft have been certified as ‘PED tolerant’.

Until now, EASA required that PEDs are switched off during the ‘critical phases’ of the flight, i.e. during taxiing, take-off and landing, yet their use was allowed in ‘flight mode’, which means having the possibility to receive and transmit data disabled. The reason for the restriction was that the effects of such use to the safety of the flight were not well known. However, new studies indicated that there is no safety risk, as long as the aircraft is properly equipped.

Therefore, EASA now only requires that the aircraft goes through an assessment process and is certified as ‘PED tolerant’. To the rest, it will be up to the airlines to decide whether they will allow passengers to use their devices during the entire flight after installing the necessary connectivity equipment and submitting their aircraft to the assessment process.

You can find EASA’s announcement here and an original Q&A section here.

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