For reasons of comfort and to avoid panic among travelers, airlines prefer to hide some details of flight operations.
In the name of passenger comfort and above all, to avoid panic on board airplanes, airlines hide some details of their day-to-day operations. They are not secrets per se, as they are data described in manuals and aeronautical regulations, but they are information that companies in the sector prefer to keep without much disclosure.
Did you know, for example, that there are axes hidden in the cabin of airplanes? Or, that flight attendants receive self-defense training to deal with eventual aggressive passengers? These are details that may seem controversial, but they are fundamental to keeping the flights safe.
Find out below some of the main “secrets” of airlines:
Discreet fire alarm
In the event of a fire in the plane’s bathroom, instead of sounding a loud siren, what is heard in the cabin is a discreet alarm that passengers may not even notice. And the goal is just that. The crew, on the other hand, know very well what happens when the alert is triggered. The discreet alarm serves to prevent panic among passengers during the flight, a situation that can make it even more difficult to fight the fire on the plane.
The Captain is the highest authority on the aircraft
The moment the doors of a commercial airline are closed, the ultimate authority on board becomes the captain, even if amount the passengers is a Supreme Court judge or a high-ranking police officer.
The captain can order the arrest of passengers, the removal of potentially dangerous cargo, impose fines and even register the will of a passenger who dies during a flight. In the event of any disagreement with the main pilot, the authority is transferred to the co-pilot.
According to the Aeronautics Code, the authority of the in-flight commander is determined by the owner of the aircraft or the operator of the transport service, in this case the airline.
Flight attendant train self defense
The work of flight attendants is not limited to just serving meals to passengers or providing guidance on flights. These professionals are also called “flight safety technicians”, as they are responsible for maintaining order and security in the aircraft cabin.
To deal with unruly passengers, flight attendants receive self-defense classes. The most practiced technique among cabin crew is the Krav Maga, a melee combat style of quick and preventive action.
Once restrained, the out-of-control occupant can be handcuffed (yes, there are handcuffs on board planes) and remain tethered to the seat until the end of the trip. In more serious cases, when the situation represents a real risk to flight safety, pilots may be forced to make a landing at an unforeseen airport to deliver the disobedient passenger to the authorities.
Axes in the cabin
Anyone traveling by plane doesn’t even imagine that an ax might be stowed in the luggage compartment. The tool with a sharp blade can be used to fight fires in the cabin or to break down the bathroom door if a passenger tries to block the passage.
The real reason the cabin lights are dimmed
There are still airlines that insist on stating that the aircraft’s cabin lights are dimmed during landing “to save energy”. This is far from true.
This procedure only occurs on night flights and serves as preparation for an eventual passenger evacuation. When lights are dimmed, passengers’ eyes adapt to low light. With vision adjusted, occupants can see better in the dark and find emergency exits through the cabin faster.
Toilets can be unlocked from the outside
Did you know that the bathroom door on airplanes can be easily unlocked from the outside? And you don’t even need to force or use any tools. A small metal plate above the bathroom availability notice hides a simple-to-operate latch.
The feature is used to remove passengers who cause a problem in the bathroom, usually people frightened in emergency situations or undisciplined travelers, such as smokers or even couples who seek, say, different experiences and end up harming those who actually need to use the bathroom.
As a safety measure, the doors of all bathrooms in the plane’s cabin are locked from the outside before each landing. This prevents panicked passengers from entering the restroom in the event of a landing emergency.
This post is based on an article from CNN