There are insider secrets to every industry. Let’s hit you with some quick examples. Fine dining tastes so good because the food is largely butter (around 30%). Winners at smaller TV awards shows (MTV, Teen choice awards etc.) already know they are going to win. Bookstores throw away massive amounts of books when they could be given to schools or libraries. That is just a taste of the things that the general public have no idea about. In this blog, we are going to list some things that you (probably) don’t know about the aviation industry. Try not to judge your pilots too harshly for number 3!
1. Travelling with your baby in your lap is not safe
Fortunately for passengers travelling with little ones, extra seats a not required when flying with a baby. However, travelling with your baby in your lap is far from safe. According to Pilots, in the event of an impact or fast deceleration you are likely to lose control of your baby. This results in your baby becoming a lose projectile in the cabin! The reason this practice has been allowed is that people are less likely to fly if they have to pay for extra seats, and driving with a baby is more dangerous anyway.
2. Why it’s often cold on the airplane
Have you ever found yourself shivering on an airplane? This is because Aircrew working in the cabin often ask the pilots to lower the temperature. They experience this temperature drop as enjoyable as they are moving around a lot. However, seated passengers often suffer as a result!
3. They sleep in the cockpit
Pilots often have to work incredibly long shifts (up to 16 hours), and this can leave them exhausted. In a survey it was revealed that 56% of pilots have accidentally fallen asleep in the cockpit. If that’s not scary enough, 29% of these pilots who fell asleep admitted that they woke up to find their co-pilot was asleep as well!
[Image retrieved from http://integratedsafetysupport.businesscatalyst.com/blog/pilots-fall-asleep-in-cockpit-on-long-haul-uk-flight]
4. Why you need to keep your windows open
Believe it or not, many of the planes safety instructions have an important function. According to Pilots, passengers are instructed to leave their window sliders open during take-off and landing for two reasons. Firstly, it allows flight attendants to see outside in an emergency to assess if one side is better for evacuation. Secondly, it allows light into the cabin if it goes dark so passengers can orient themselves if the plane flips
5. They don’t wear hats in the cockpit
Most passengers imagine that the pilots wear their hats while flying, but this simply isn’t true! Many pilots are amused by this assumption.
6. Assume tray tables have not been wiped down
Large numbers of people get sick after travelling, this is a result of what they touch rather than what they breathe. Aircrew rarely wipe down tray tables between flights. This means germs spread like wildfire on planes. But don’t worry, the lavatory is always cleaned between flights.
7. You’ll never be told directly if an engine has failed
Many of us can easily think of imaginary scenario where the aircrew announce that an engine has failed and everyone collectively starts to panic. Fortunately, this is not how it would happen in real life. Aircrew are unlikely to inform passengers of the true extent of a negative scenario. For example, in the event of an engine failure, passengers might be told that “One of the engines is not indicating properly”.
[Image retrieved from http://kdvr.com/2017/10/01/air-france-plane-makes-emergency-landing-after-engine-failure-over-atlantic/]
8. Turbulence is not dangerous, but updrafts on the other hand..
It is impossible for turbulence to crash a plane. The only reasons pilots will try to avoid it is because it is very annoying! However, updrafts can be very dangerous, encountering an updraft while flying is like hitting a speed bump at 500 miles an hour. Everything will be thrown up in the air and down again very violently, which can jeopardize safety on board (think back to the baby in number 1).
9. The plane you fly with may not be the one you paid for
Even when you book using an airlines website, and are walked onto a plane with the same name painted on, it may not be the same airline. Half the time, the airplane you are on is a regional airline. These planes are different from major airlines and have different safety standards, rules and regulations. For example, pilots and crew do not need to be trained to the same standards as those on major airlines! Interesting to know but largely unavoidable!
10. The smoothest ride is in the middle of the plane
If you are looking for an smooth and easy flight, apparently you should get a seat in the middle of the plane near the wings. According to pilot Patrick Smith “A plane is like a seesaw. If you're in the middle, you don't move as much.” If this fact interests you, you might want to view our blog about which airplane seats are statistically the safest!
[Image retrieved from https://www.videoblocks.com/video/airplane-wing-and-engine-view-from-a-flying-plane-hcjpfosaitj09cfu]
A final note
We hope you enjoyed our list and that we have not put you off flying forever! It is still the safest way to travel and has extremely low chances of going wrong so don’t freak out too much if you are flying with a baby in your lap. One risk you should be aware of is your flight being delayed. Huge numbers of passengers are delayed each year and do not realise they are entitled to compensation. In fact 85% of delayed passengers miss out on their right to compensation.
At flight-delayed we specialise in delivering the compensation that delayed passengers are entitled to. This can be as much as EUR600 per passenger! If you have been delayed in the last 6 years, you can use our free flight checker to see if you are entitled to compensation. Don’t worry, use of the checker is non-commital and we have a no-win-no-fee policy so you can never lose money!