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So...the seatbelt sign is merely a suggestion?

So...the seatbelt sign is merely a suggestion?

Old Aug 16, 12, 5:39 pm
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So...the seatbelt sign is merely a suggestion?

Starting in April of this year ORD-CLE I noticed that the FAs have had to make announcements throughout the flight for people to sit the &*%$ down because the captain still has the "fasten seatbelt" sign on. They had to say it about 6 times. Prior to this, for about the last 25 years I have been flying I think I can count on one hand the instances in which somebody had to be told not to be stupid.

On to SFO-ORD 2 weeks ago: same thing; about 6 announcements in 3.5 hrs.

Later that day ORD-AVP some idiot had to be told to sit down and stop getting her bag out of the overhead during the climb (!) to cruising altitude.

10 days later ORD-SFO morons had to be told again multiple times that the seatbelt sign was on.

2 days ago SFO-PHL cretins had to be told about 10 times to sit their stupid a--es down.

Today PHL-SFO, whenever the seatbelt sign was on, people walked all over the plane any damn time they pleased. I lost count somewhere around 2 dozen.

...?? Is it just me or are rules merely a suggestion all of a sudden? I don't care if some idiot ignores a safety rule and splits their head open on the floor, but if they use me to break their fall first and I get even so much as a pinkie sprain, they're getting sued.
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Old Aug 16, 12, 5:44 pm
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Last week, we had Y pax tromping up through F during the tail end of the climb to use the lavs on a PMCO 738; FAs didn't even bother to announce that the seatbelt light was still on.

OTOH, I've been on SFO-IAD transcons where the pilot turned on the light about an hour into the flight and left it on for the next 3.5 hours, even though perfectly smooth air or at worst very light and occasional chop. When that happens, you bet I'm going to ignore the light.
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Old Aug 16, 12, 5:56 pm
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Originally Posted by exerda View Post
Last week, we had Y pax tromping up through F during the tail end of the climb to use the lavs on a PMCO 738; FAs didn't even bother to announce that the seatbelt light was still on.

OTOH, I've been on SFO-IAD transcons where the pilot turned on the light about an hour into the flight and left it on for the next 3.5 hours, even though perfectly smooth air or at worst very light and occasional chop. When that happens, you bet I'm going to ignore the light.
There was turbulence on each of these flights that I mentioned, and the pilots even announced that turbulence was expected and told people to stay in their seats. I have experienced the occasional flight in which it seemed that the pilots forgot us and out bladders, but these instances didn't fall into that category!
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Old Aug 16, 12, 9:20 pm
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I have heard multiple FAs tell PAX "I have to tell you that the seat belt sign is on". In other words, you're duly warned that moving about the cabin is at your own risk. They don't say "you have to sit down". Of course, people should have common sense and use the restroom in the airport before boarding, and then there wouldn't be an issue.
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Old Aug 16, 12, 9:48 pm
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Originally Posted by exerda View Post
OTOH, I've been on SFO-IAD transcons where the pilot turned on the light about an hour into the flight and left it on for the next 3.5 hours, even though perfectly smooth air or at worst very light and occasional chop. When that happens, you bet I'm going to ignore the light.
Yeah. I think there has been more such abuse these days. Cry wolf too much and what do you expect of the passengers?
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Old Aug 16, 12, 9:50 pm
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Originally Posted by kcmo57 View Post
Of course, people should have common sense and use the restroom in the airport before boarding, and then there wouldn't be an issue.
That's fine for a short flight but not the long ones! Welcome to FT.
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Old Aug 16, 12, 10:42 pm
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I recently took a couple of European flights and noticed that the seatbelt light was turned off very quickly. For example, even as the aircraft was climbing from takeoff, the seatbelt light went off. It stayed off for the entire flight except for one period of turbulence. And I should note that it was off during periods when American carriers would absolutely have it on.

So the bottom line is that American carriers are keeping the seatbelt light lit for approximately three to five times longer than it needs to be lit. In Europe, I think the seatbelt light means that everyone needs to have their belt fastened, including the stewardesses. In the U.S., I think they sometimes put it on to clear the aisles for drink service or just for fun.

I have to say I found things to like about my European flights. I even enjoyed paying for my drink and snack on a cheapo flight because I was served very quickly as many people chose to get nothing.
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Old Aug 16, 12, 10:53 pm
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Originally Posted by Rebelyell View Post

So the bottom line is that American carriers are keeping the seatbelt light lit for approximately three to five times longer than it needs to be lit. In Europe, I think the seatbelt light means that everyone needs to have their belt fastened, including the stewardesses. In the U.S., I think they sometimes put it on to clear the aisles for drink service or just for fun.
+1

The slightest bump will cause United pilots to turn on the seat belt sign. In my experienes, its kept on much longer than needed (ex 30min after the said baby bumb).

My last flight from SIN-NRT (7 hours), the sign was turned on and left on for about an hour. This happened about 3-4 times.

Sorry, I dont play that game.

However, I do agree with the OP. Climb, landing, and taxi are different.
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Old Aug 17, 12, 12:34 am
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Originally Posted by Rebelyell View Post
I recently took a couple of European flights and noticed that the seatbelt light was turned off very quickly.

...

So the bottom line is that American carriers are keeping the seatbelt light lit for approximately three to five times longer than it needs to be lit.
Yep, the whole concept of light on til cruising altitude is just silly.

Works much more sensibly in Europe. ^
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Old Aug 17, 12, 12:50 am
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Originally Posted by nerd View Post
Yep, the whole concept of light on til cruising altitude is just silly.

Works much more sensibly in Europe. ^
Or hop the border to Canada. Seatbelt sign often goes off at about 10,000 feet (if the map screen on AC flights is accurate).
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Old Aug 17, 12, 1:02 am
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on a recent tatl.....we will turn the seatbelt sign off after the food service has been completed and the fa's clear the aisle.
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Old Aug 17, 12, 1:05 am
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Lord help us if they turn off the no smoking light.
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Old Aug 17, 12, 4:37 pm
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if you get up while the light is on the FAs are supposed to remind you that it is illuminated. IME that's been done individually, not over the PA, unless there is really notable turbulence.
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Old Aug 17, 12, 4:56 pm
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Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
if you get up while the light is on the FAs are supposed to remind you that it is illuminated. IME that's been done individually, not over the PA, unless there is really notable turbulence.
It seems that reminders while taxiing after landing are done over the PA. I'm guessing because at that time of the flight it's likely to have a chain reaction effect.
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Old Aug 17, 12, 5:51 pm
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Originally Posted by nerd View Post
It seems that reminders while taxiing after landing are done over the PA. I'm guessing because at that time of the flight it's likely to have a chain reaction effect.
Agreed. The times I've experienced a personal reminder was when we were in-flight. I think that part of it is that the FAs were close enough to me to make the reminder versus being buckled in themselves.
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