Window Shade Must be Up | Australian Frequent Flyer
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Window Shade Must be Up

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tuapekastar

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I first noticed this on a QF flight earlier this year, and have noticed a couple more times since (on JQ and/or QF).

A request (well, more a directive) was made for all window blinds to be raised during takeoff and/or landing, as a "safety" requirement - why so?

Is this requirement alirline-based, country-based, or a general aviation policy, and how long has it been in force? Before last Easter I cannot recall this announcement ever being made.

Thanks
 

Mal

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I have had it on multiple airlines and flights, and dating back way before Easter this year.

My understanding is that it provides visibility in the event of an emergency both for rescuers and also pax inside the aircraft.
 

oz_mark

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tuapekastar said:
I first noticed this on a QF flight earlier this year, and have noticed a couple more times since (on JQ and/or QF).

A request (well, more a directive) was made for all window blinds to be raised during takeoff and/or landing, as a "safety" requirement - why so?

Is this requirement alirline-based, country-based, or a general aviation policy, and how long has it been in force? Before last Easter I cannot recall this announcement ever being made.

Thanks
My understanding of the requirement is that is in an accident having the shades up helps you orient yourself (e.g. which way is up), allows you to assess the situation outside the aircraft (e.g. choose an exit free of fire for example), and if the aircraft lights go out, to be the source of light.

I think also the habit of dimming the lights at take-off and landing also relates here as if the lights go out in the plane in an accident the eyes can adjust quicker.
 

pshepvic

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Hi guys ... reasoning was explained to me by an international flight attendant ... apparently it is also so that passengers can alert the crew if they see smoke or fire. From the cockpit, the pilots are not able to see the engine or wings, and in most cases the crew are not able to see outside from their seats either, and they rely on the passengers to notify them of anything "unusual" happening outside. Here's hoping someone is paying attention....
 

JohnK

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This has been a requirement on many airlines and flights for as long as I can remember.

In fact I remember one particular flight SKG-LHR on Olympic Airways in 1994 where the flight attendants asked that window shades remain up during takeoff and landing.
 

Kiwi Flyer

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in the event of a crash it allows rescuers a view of the inside (check for signs of life)
 

Soundguy

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pshepvic said:
... apparently it is also so that passengers can alert the crew if they see smoke or fire. From the cockpit, the pilots are not able to see the engine or wings
That seems the most likely reason; would also allow people outside to count the corpses inside as was hinted at above.:(

The Kegworth air disaster could have been averted if the pilot was informed by the passengers / crew of which engine had failed..... as he was unable to see the engines he ended up shutting down the wrong one. Very bad accident: Kegworth air disaster
 

oz_mark

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Whichever the actual reasons are, clearly having the shades open offers a number of safety advantages.
 

maninblack

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This policy has been in place for many years on QF. Not sure about the safety reasons given in various posts, they seem a bit spurious to me. I always assumed it was so that the cleaners wouldn't have to put them up, saving on turnaround time.
 

dajop

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This is definitely not a requirement on all airlines. However being used to carriers in this part of the world that have the requirement (QF & DJ specifically, and I think SQ also do it), I find it a little disconcerting when it is not done. I do like to see outside the airplane when landing and taking off. AA definitely don't have such a policy. In fact I recall reading in their IF Mag that they can save fuel by keeping window shades down during turnarounds - as it keeps the plane cooler.
 

simongr

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I havent flown on a plane that didnt have this requirement. BA, CX, QF, AA, Gulf Air and SQ
 

dajop

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simongr said:
I havent flown on a plane that didnt have this requirement. BA, CX, QF, AA, Gulf Air and SQ
Concure re BA, CX, QF & SQ, but I have flown three times on AA in the last week and five times in October, and not once did flight attendants ensure window shades were up during their preparations for landing. On some of those flights up to 1/4 of the shades remained down during take off and/or landing.
 

Kiwi Flyer

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dajop said:
AA definitely don't have such a policy. In fact I recall reading in their IF Mag that they can save fuel by keeping window shades down during turnarounds - as it keeps the plane cooler.
I've been on some NZ flights to the south pacific islands where after parking on the tarmac the FA asks pax to pull the shades down to help keep a/c cool during turnaround.
 
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