F Lap Child run amok

 
Old Jan 29, 08, 11:11 am
  #1  
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F Lap Child run amok

No, this isn't another thread to complain about the presence of a lap child in F. As much as I despise Cheerio tossing, screaming baby my concern is more for safety.

Yesterday on my flight SEA-DFW, there was a lap child that started screaming the moment the door closed. The FAs allowed the baby to play with an iPhone during taxiout and take off. Not exactly safe, but it got us some quiet. On landing in DFW, the baby was allowed to run free between row 3 and row 5 - while on an active taxiway. The couple's other child also spend the taxi time climbing all over her seat. There's no way this is safe, is there? Is it worth saying something?

I don't want compensation or anything like that, but we were all put at risk (especially the kids) by the way the FAs handled this. Personally, I'd prefer not to risk having a flying iPhone hit my head, or see child/projectiles potentially hurled through the F cabin - even if it means listening to the screaming baby.

Last edited by McFlyPHL; Jan 29, 08 at 12:07 pm
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Old Jan 29, 08, 11:28 am
  #2  
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Last time I witnessed similarly unsafe conduct and disregard for safety rules I waited until the end of the flight and calmly told the FAs that I had no choice but to contact the FAA with details. I've never seen flight atttendants look so horrified.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 11:49 am
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Originally Posted by McFlyPHL View Post
No, this isn't another thread to complain about the presence of a lap child in F. As much as I despise Cheerio tossing, screaming baby my concern is more for safety.
.
Then maybe you should change the title. What other meaning can this thread have. if you say "Lap child run amok."
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Old Jan 29, 08, 11:50 am
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Originally Posted by McFlyPHL View Post
The FAs allowed the baby to play with an iPhone during taxiout and take off. Not exactly safe, but it got us some quiet.
Whoa, let me get this straight. The kid was playing with an electronic device during taxi and takeoff and you lived to tell about it? You must be counting your blessings. I was fortunate in that during every one of my 150+ segments last year, every passenger turned off his/her cellphone, blackberry, gameboy, Bose headphones, PDA, etc., so I never had to experience this kind of risk.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 11:53 am
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Originally Posted by Blumie View Post
Whoa, let me get this straight. The kid was playing with an electronic device during taxi and takeoff and you lived to tell about it? You must be counting your blessings. I was fortunate in that during every one of my 150+ segments last year, every passenger turned off his/her cellphone, blackberry, gameboy, Bose headphones, PDA, etc., so I never had to experience this kind of risk.


You forgot to add the [/sarchasm] at the end of your post or else it might spread to subsequent posts
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Old Jan 29, 08, 11:58 am
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Originally Posted by FWAAA View Post
Last time I witnessed similarly unsafe conduct and disregard for safety rules I waited until the end of the flight and calmly told the FAs that I had no choice but to contact the FAA with details. I've never seen flight atttendants look so horrified.
Their expression was possibly justified... I have heard that the FAs are each individually liable for a share of a $10k fine if the jet moves on the runway while pax are out of their seats. Perhaps an AA FA could confirm or deny this.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 11:59 am
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Originally Posted by technique View Post
You forgot to add the [/sarchasm] at the end of your post or else it might spread to subsequent posts


All sarcasm aside, my guess is that there's a limited amount FAs can do in this situation. I'd be surprised if they can physically restrain the child except in extreme circumstances. So the most they can do may be limited to chastising the parents. Maybe they didn't even do that in this case, but I don't know that they truly can force compliance with the rules.

Maybe one of our FA friends can help us out here.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:01 pm
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Originally Posted by nd_eric_77 View Post
Their expression was possibly justified... I have heard that the FAs are each individually liable for a share of a $10k fine if the jet moves on the runway while pax are out of their seats. Perhaps an AA FA could confirm or deny this.
See my post right below yours. I do not think you are correct. I think it's the FA's duty to make the announcements, but not to physically force compliance (except, of course, in extreme circumstances).
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:12 pm
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Originally Posted by Blumie View Post
See my post right below yours. I do not think you are correct. I think it's the FA's duty to make the announcements, but not to physically force compliance (except, of course, in extreme circumstances).
In the circumstance of moving down the taxiway, the FA's are capable of contacting the flight deck and requesting the jet stop taxiing until the pax is seated and restrained. I have actually seen them do this to get a pax to turn off one of those oh-so-deadly blackberries prior to readying for takeoff.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:13 pm
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Originally Posted by Blumie View Post
See my post right below yours. I do not think you are correct. I think it's the FA's duty to make the announcements, but not to physically force compliance (except, of course, in extreme circumstances).

Not sure exactly what they can or should do but can tell you what happen about five years ago when I was on a UA ORD/EWR flight that was on a somewhat lengthy taxi wait. Children continued running up and down the aisle even after FAs made an announcement. Head FA must have called the pilot and gave him the low down on what was going on. Pilot gets on the PA in a very terse tone and explains very clearly that if the children do not sit down immediately he will take the a/c off taxi and have airport police come out and escort both children and parents off the a/c. Needless to say, the idiotic parents woke up to the situation real quickly. Bottom line is that if the FAs cannot control unsafe behavior, then the pilot who is ultimately responsible for the safety of the paxs and crew, should.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:14 pm
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Originally Posted by Blumie View Post
Whoa, let me get this straight. The kid was playing with an electronic device during taxi and takeoff and you lived to tell about it? You must be counting your blessings. I was fortunate in that during every one of my 150+ segments last year, every passenger turned off his/her cellphone, blackberry, gameboy, Bose headphones, PDA, etc., so I never had to experience this kind of risk.
I'm not worried about the phone being on... I'm worried about an 18 month old playing with it during a time it could easily become a projectile. hell, if the mother had HELD the phone securely I probably wouldn't care.

As far as the kids on seats and in the aisles, the FAs didn't even say anything. Their primary concern appeared to be shutting the kid up, not safety.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:15 pm
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Originally Posted by newyorkgeorge View Post
Not sure exactly what they can or should do but can tell you what happen about five years ago when I was on a UA ORD/EWR flight that was on a somewhat lengthy taxi wait. Children continued running up and down the aisle even after FAs made an announcement. Head FA must have called the pilot and gave him the low down on what was going on. Pilot gets on the PA in a very terse tone and explains very clearly that if the children do not sit down immediately he will take the a/c off taxi and have airport police come out and escort both children and parents off the a/c. Needless to say, the idiotic parents woke up to the situation real quickly. Bottom line is that if the FAs cannot control unsafe behavior, then the pilot who is ultimately responsible for the safety of the paxs and crew, should.
AWESOME!
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:28 pm
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Originally Posted by McFlyPHL View Post
I'm not worried about the phone being on... I'm worried about an 18 month old playing with it during a time it could easily become a projectile. hell, if the mother had HELD the phone securely I probably wouldn't care.

As far as the kids on seats and in the aisles, the FAs didn't even say anything. Their primary concern appeared to be shutting the kid up, not safety.
I still think you're overplaying the safety card (I, for example, have left my iphone untethered during taxi and takeoff, and the worst that has happened is that it slid down the center console and I risked losing it). The child probably was at the biggest risk, but it sounds like an injury to the child might have led to an ovation by the other F passengers. (The downside, though, is that you would have been delayed while they off-loaded the kid back into the jetway.) It sounds to me like the FAs should have done more, but I still think they're limited in what they can do.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:31 pm
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As mentioned, the FAs are not security guards. I'm sure that physical restraint is not within their job description, and I don't find any fault with that. But police and such are charged with such duties, and the threat/promise of such is what the flight staff have at their disposal. So, they may not be able to contain the behavior now, but one hopes that the promised alternatives have that effect, as in the case cited by newyorkgeorge.

Cheers.
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Old Jan 29, 08, 12:47 pm
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On a recent AA DFW-PBI flight a similar situation arose, but the FA's got it under control pretty quickly......embarrassed the parents over the PA, announced they would not be able to finish the drink service until the children were seated,as they were running the aisles.On a SW flight, they told a parent if they didn't control the kids they would open the door and let them out.....................it seemed to work.Sorry to say seems like people are getting worse about this, good reason to avoid those packed MCO flights unless you have to..............I remember when people(and their kids) behaved pretty well and actually wore clothes, not cutoffs and old tshirts to fly, and I'm not THAT old.Not over 50 yet(well, close)
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