Laptop in front row seat pockets

Old Oct 10, 19, 12:48 am
  #1  
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Laptop in front row seat pockets

I normally sit in row 1 Club Europe or 2D on the Embraer flight from/to LCY several times a month. These are front rows, but not exit rows. If I need to use my laptop during a flight, I'll put it in the seat pocket attached to the bulkhead during takeoff and landing. This is not normally an issue, but on 3 occasions the member of cabin crew has insisted the the laptop is put in the overhead cabin during takeoff and landing. It's usually a staff member who appears new.
I can't see any logical explanation as to why a laptop in the seatpocket of row 1, is any more of a problem that in any other row?
I'm intrigued, is this a case of cabin crew misinterpreting their guidance or is it a real rule?
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Old Oct 10, 19, 12:54 am
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I've seen this a lot recently. On a LH flight the other day (row 2, poor seats but the legroom was something to write home about...) the FA was very bothered by the chap in 1D countering that it was normally OK.

I also find the fact that my ipad keyboard seems to be the dividing line between danger and safety slightly bizarre. Admittedly it's magnetic adhesion to the device is not Apple's finest achievement, but it does make me smile when I am solemnly told that it must fold back the keyboard to comply with safety.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 1:07 am
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im normally armed with a large camera
This causes confusion
Some insisting i have the strap round my neck others the opposite
I often avoid row one for this reason
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Old Oct 10, 19, 1:13 am
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The main rule to consider is that you need to follow the instructions of the Cabin Crew.
I guess to some extent they can interpret 'the rules' they are given, and what one sees as a risk, some others may not. I doubt they cover all makes / sizes / weights of PEDs and what might be permitted where on 3 different aircraft types.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 1:18 am
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The bulkhead pockets are held on with poppers I think, and the weight of a laptop combined with one or other of Newton's laws presumably causes a risk they'll detach.

Cabin crew don't have time for risk assessments and are not empowered to make judgement calls on fine distinctions - if a screen plus a keyboard is what they have been told is a laptop, then that's what it is.

And as others have said, follow crew instructions. It's the law anyway, but as a matter of common courtesy it's the easiest path.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 1:35 am
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row 1 Club Europe or 2D on the Embraer flight from/to LCY several times a month. These are front rows, but not exit rows”

I have to take issue with you. I also travel on these flights at least 2x a month, and I choose to sit in rows 1 or 2. These are shown as exit rows on the seat map and when you select them, you have to confirm that you are physically capable (I paraphrase, of operating the doors etc.)

As others have said, its best to obey the CC and putting away a laptop or iPad is only a momentary inconvenience.

What concerns me more on these flights is seeing adults with a baby in arms seated in these exit rows. How in an emergency could they be expected to help?
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Old Oct 10, 19, 1:38 am
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What you need to bear in mind here is that the bulkheads can't be used for excessive storage, one of the learnings of the Kegworth tragedy. Moreover though you are allowed to hold handheld devices during taxi, take-off and landing, the rule of thumb there is 1 kgs, not that anyone is going to weigh anything here. But essentially that covers mobile telephones, Kindles and at a pinch smaller tablets.

In between you've got common sense, and generally speaking being hit at head height by a flying laptop as a result of the brakes coming on during the faster stages of taxiing (which feels fairly similar to hitting a brick wall at 20 mph in my one and only experience) could have really bad consequences.

So yes I guess there is a grey area. If your tablet / PCis smaller than Highlife magazine then I think you would be OK. If it is larger than Highlife magazine then for mainly your own safety it would be best to go in the overhead storage for a few minutes. I seem to recall there is another weight guideline for this too, but at the end of the day if the person securing the cabin is unhappy with a risk, it's the risk that gets sorted, not the person doing the job.

Last edited by corporate-wage-slave; Oct 10, 19 at 1:49 am
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Old Oct 10, 19, 1:40 am
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Originally Posted by Msclelovr View Post
row 1 Club Europe or 2D on the Embraer flight from/to LCY several times a month. These are front rows, but not exit rows”

I have to take issue with you. I also travel on these flights at least 2x a month, and I choose to sit in rows 1 or 2. These are shown as exit rows on the seat map and when you select them, you have to confirm that you are physically capable (I paraphrase, of operating the doors etc.)

As others have said, its best to obey the CC and putting away a laptop or iPad is only a momentary inconvenience.

What concerns me more on these flights is seeing adults with a baby in arms seated in these exit rows. How in an emergency could they be expected to help?

To my mind, an 'exit row' is one with an exit door that needs to be opened and which other passengers need to pass through to exit?

I agree, it's not a significant inconvenience and I would always follow CC instruction.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 1:47 am
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Originally Posted by Msclelovr View Post
I have to take issue with you. I also travel on these flights at least 2x a month, and I choose to sit in rows 1 or 2. These are shown as exit rows on the seat map and when you select them, you have to confirm that you are physically capable (I paraphrase, of operating the doors etc.)
As I understand it, it's a bit more complicated than that. In a literal sense they are not exit rows, in fact they are some distance from the door in question However you are correct that you have to give consent to the implications when selecting seats, plus FLY will bleep at boarding for a visual check. The issue here is that with only 2 cabin crew on Embraers, it may be necessary for those sat in row 1/2 to operate the emergency exits, particularly if they are one crew down during the emergency.

The bulkhead requirement is slightly different since it would apply to any bulkhead on BA's fleet - very limited storage is allowed in that area. A newspaper is ok, anything bigger could result in a request (command actually) to stow it overhead. Even a large book could easily come under this category.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 3:00 am
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On CityFlyer, laptops can't be stored in setback pockets for takeoff and landing in any row - they must be put in your bag. The script of the boarding PA has recently been updated to reflect this and matches the pre-recorded departure PA.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 3:16 am
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Hands up anyone who has been hit by a flying laptop.... I have, it wasn’t pleasant and if that was during an emergency I would have been incapable of my duties. As it was I was just removed from the service.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 3:19 am
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At LHR our PA is as follows: “Larger items, including laptops, must be switched off and stowed away safely”. The ambiguity lies in where is considered “stowed away safely”, and similar to other posters, I believe having a laptop at the row 1 bulkhead, or indeed at any row, would not be wise. I do believe the seat pockets at the bulkhead contain a weight restriction placard, which you may well be exceeding with your laptop added to all the BA literature already in place
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Old Oct 10, 19, 3:23 am
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Originally Posted by bisonrav View Post
The bulkhead pockets are held on with poppers I think, and the weight of a laptop combined with one or other of Newton's laws presumably causes a risk they'll detach.

Cabin crew don't have time for risk assessments and are not empowered to make judgement calls on fine distinctions - if a screen plus a keyboard is what they have been told is a laptop, then that's what it is.

And as others have said, follow crew instructions. It's the law anyway, but as a matter of common courtesy it's the easiest path.
Totally agree and I'll always make a point of listening to safety videos/demos even though I could probably give it, equally I'll do what I'm ask with little or no challenge. I think the poo T is it should be consistent, it either can go in the seat pocket or it can't, it shouldn't depend on the crew or day of the week.

This is why I prefer row 2 (I know I'm in the minority there).
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Old Oct 10, 19, 3:51 am
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
What you need to bear in mind here is that the bulkheads can't be used for excessive storage, one of the learnings of the Kegworth tragedy. Moreover though you are allowed to hold handheld devices during taxi, take-off and landing, the rule of thumb there is 1 kgs, not that anyone is going to weigh anything here. But essentially that covers mobile telephones, Kindles and at a pinch smaller tablets.

In between you've got common sense, and generally speaking being hit at head height by a flying laptop as a result of the brakes coming on during the faster stages of taxiing (which feels fairly similar to hitting a brick wall at 20 mph in my one and only experience) could have really bad consequences.
I am not sure I follow the logic here with respect to seat pocket stowage. I thought that the issues with stowage in bulkhead seats were related to access issues rather than concerns about flying objects. If there was a concern about heavy objects flying out of seat pockets to hit passengers in case of accident, one would have thought that it would apply to all seats and not just bulkhead seats.

As to Kegworth, there was a long list of recommendations in the AAIB report but not a single one on bulkhead stowage or seat pocket stowage. There were discussions of seat design, cabin floor design, overhead bin design (in particular the latching mechanism and also strength of attachment of oberhead cabin to the fuselage) but there was afaik no discussion at all in the report of bulkhead stowage or seat pocket stowage.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 9:40 pm
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Flying over the more vertical parts of China last week there was what I call “bad turbulence” but probably ranks as medium-to-low to an aviator. This was mid-flight and not in takeoff or descent. I was slightly horrified to see my neighbour’s laptop levitate from the seat pocket to the ceiling in half a second, stay there for two, then slam back into his thighs, corner first. Two hours later he hobbled off the flight.

Just put it away.
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