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Minimum Size of Handheld Electronic Devices That Must Be Stored Can Be Subjective

Minimum Size of Handheld Electronic Devices That Must Be Stored Can Be Subjective

Old May 13, 19, 4:30 pm
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Minimum Size of Handheld Electronic Devices That Must Be Stored Can Be Subjective

I'm on a flight now in seat 1a. The flight attendant told me before take off, i would have to stow my 13" tablet in the overhead. I turned it off and slipped it in the pocket in front of me as I've always did in the past when I did not need it. When she came back she insisted that it go in the overhead.

I'm not trying to be difficult but I've traveled with this same tablet for the past 2 years and sat in this same seat ive never been asked to put it away let alone making me put it up in the overhead. Definitely a case if an extremist

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Old May 13, 19, 4:42 pm
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Although we may disagree with FA’s, they decide what rules to enforce.
I had one get very serious with me when I wanted to watch safety video (VX) in First on Airbus metal. We were still at gate and I assured him I would stow IFE before push back. Told if I did not comply, I would be escorted off plane!
so, bottom line, do as they ask.
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Old May 13, 19, 4:49 pm
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Two pounds is the rule-of-thumb limit for handheld portable electronic devices.

That said, a two-pound tablet could be quite injurious in an adverse event.
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Old May 13, 19, 4:51 pm
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Originally Posted by dannieboiz View Post
I'm on a flight now in seat 1a. The flight attendant told me before take off, i would have to stow my 13" tablet in the overhead. I turned it off and slipped it in the pocket in front of me as I've always did in the past when I did not need it. When she came back she insisted that it go in the overhead.

I'm not trying to be difficult but I've traveled with this same tablet for the past 2 years and sat in this same seat ive never been asked to put it away let alone making me put it up in the overhead. Definitely a case if an extremist

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You never know what FA may have experienced an unfortunate flying electronic object during takeoff-type mishap, or have been written up for not properly enforcing the policy, and has a heightened sense of paranoia.
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Old May 13, 19, 5:44 pm
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Not sure I'd like to get hit by a flying 13" tablet. Maybe that ought to be the test.
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Old May 13, 19, 10:56 pm
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I use a Microsoft Surface Book 2 with a detachable 13" tablet that is 1.5lb, similar in size and weight to the iPad Pro 13". I get asked to put it away maybe 1 out of 10 times. On BA I have been told that the rule is that electronics need to be smaller in size than the security information card. Into the overhead vs. the seatback is a bit much. A lot of people put their notebook computers in the seatback. But as others have commented, follow all FA commands for your own safety!

I have never seen a college kid reading a textbook asked to put it away.
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Old May 14, 19, 12:13 am
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Originally Posted by SFOPeter View Post
I have never seen a college kid reading a textbook asked to put it away.
Ha! I've never seen a college kid reading a textbook. That's too rare to be worried about

As for me, if sitting in the first class bulkhead, I always store my tiny 13 in. 2.69 lbs Dell xps laptop in the overhead. Those bulkhead pockets are kinda flimsy. If I'm sitting in other seats (i.e. not bulkhead), occasionally I have the laptop out working during take-off/landing if I have a pressing issue from work, and I get asked about 2 out of 10 times to put it away, and of course I comply because the FA is just doing their job, and even if there is some ambiguity on it, it's best to defer to the FA on this. And gosh, as I think about this now, I wouldn't want to be hit by my flying Dell XPS 2.69 pound laptop.
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Old May 14, 19, 12:19 am
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I don't particularly want to get hit by a phone either. Is that the line? If so, why limit it to electronics?
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Old May 14, 19, 12:24 am
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Well, if we expand it to books, I'd rather be hit by either "The Red Badge of Courage" or "Old Man and The Sea" than "War and Peace"
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Old May 14, 19, 7:53 am
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I think my wife's stainless steel water bottle has more ballistic potential....
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Old May 14, 19, 8:43 am
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I think we can poke holes or find faults in many rules/regs. The issue here is that you comply with the FA (which the OP did). There will always be subjective calls by individuals; passengers and employees alike.
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Old May 14, 19, 9:05 am
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
I don't particularly want to get hit by a phone either. Is that the line? If so, why limit it to electronics?
Because the FAA says so.
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Old May 14, 19, 5:59 pm
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Originally Posted by 3Cforme View Post
Because the FAA says so.
My point is, is the purpose of the rule actually to prevent projectiles? Because, if so, limiting it to electronics is just silly. It should apply to everything harder than a pillow.
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Old May 14, 19, 9:46 pm
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In the end, it's the FAA that makes the rule that anything not deemed a "small handheld electronic device" must be stowed for takeoff and landing. It's also the FAA's call that the seatback pocket is not an appropriate stowage space.

It's a Flight Attendants job to prepare the cabin for an emergency evacuation for every takeoff and landing. Ultimately, that's what it's all about. People have come to take safe air travel for granted. I imagine the folks that died on the Russian airplane would have appreciated people not stopping to get their carry-on items from the overhead bins. I imagine people who were severely injured in unexpected turbulence wish they had left their seat belt buckled while they were seated. I bet people that have been injured while casually strolling to the bathroom in turbulence probably wish they had waited. It's an airplane. A metal tube, careening through the sky at 600 MPH - what could go wrong?
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Old May 16, 19, 2:51 pm
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
My point is, is the purpose of the rule actually to prevent projectiles? Because, if so, limiting it to electronics is just silly. It should apply to everything harder than a pillow.
No, it's probably because electronics have rules about what you can do with them, and if they go flying, some of them may go into a mode that shouldn't be used on board if they hit something just the right way to think it's a button press or whatever. A paper book can't malfunction and start broadcasting signals which could disrupt other equipment, some electronics can.

Yes, it's very few electronics that can do that, but the average person and even average FA is not trained (and not trainable) to figure out which small subset of electronics could cause those problems, so it's simpler to just disallow more broadly. For example, it's often malfunctioning electronics which poses the great disruption risk, but the average person doesn't know how to detect a malfunction that does affect their experience. If their device suddenly starts sending a signal at 50x the normal strength or at the wrong frequency, for example, they probably have no idea that it could be doing that. And without the proper test equipment, no one on board could necessarily figure that out.

People who don't understand this think it's silly to disallow this or that because "this or that is not a problem". They're not thinking about every possible "not obvious to the average person" malfunction of that equipment, and they don't understand that the only way to rule out such rare possibilities is to disallow a much broader range of stuff "just in case".
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