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How to buckle seat belt on plane; safety sham?

How to buckle seat belt on plane; safety sham?

Old Dec 20, 19, 11:56 pm
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How to buckle seat belt on plane; safety sham?

Am I the only one who really wonders how serious airlines are about safety when the instructions for buckling the seat belt are given as the plane is readying for takeoff? Considering that passengers are going to be herded hundreds of miles in a metal can with poor air quality 30,000 feet in the air with no means of escape, I actually find it insulting that seat belt instructions are part of the safety demonstration. As in, everybody except the very young knows how to buckle their seat belts.

Forgive me here; this just really irks me.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 12:09 am
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The reason is not so much to show you how to fasten it, but to show you how to unfasten it. Sure you know how to use them in your car, But that’s precisely the problem. You do it dozens of times a week.

But car seat belts work differently from the “lift the buckle” way that airplane seat belts release. And in a panicked emergency, passengers might not be thinking clearly. Fliers who are disoriented or mentally incapacitated — barely awake before a 6 a.m., takeoff, jetlagged after a long flight, or under the influence of Ambien or alcohol — have been known to reach to the right or left near their thighs, as you would in an automobile, trying to push a seat belt release button rather than reaching for their laps and lifting a flap. In other words, previously established “muscle memory” works against you in a crisis. That’s why it is in the safety briefing - hopefully the information will somehow filter through if you ever really need to use it.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 12:43 am
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If someone can't work out how to buckle and unbuckle one of those belts unaided I certainly hope they are not in an Exit row.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 1:06 am
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Originally Posted by Finkface View Post
The reason is not so much to show you how to fasten it, but to show you how to unfasten it. Sure you know how to use them in your car ... dozens of times a week.

But car seat belts work differently from the “lift the buckle” way that airplane seat belts release. And in a panicked emergency, passengers might not be thinking clearly. ... previously established “muscle memory” works against you in a crisis. That’s why it is in the safety briefing - hopefully the information will somehow filter through if you ever really need to use it.
this, exactly

Originally Posted by trooper View Post
If someone can't work out how to buckle and unbuckle one of those belts unaided I certainly hope they are not in an Exit row.
and this
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Old Dec 21, 19, 1:14 am
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Anyone with half a brain can spot the exits and yet they point them out every flight I’m on, because it has been demonstrated time and again that in smoke filled cabins people have died due to moving past the nearest usable exit while making their way to the door they entered the aircraft through

there is a reason they repeatedly bang on about incredibly obvious and mundane things
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Old Dec 21, 19, 6:43 am
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Safety briefings are part of the regulatory requirements. You can be as irked as you wish but they are't going away. Repetition is retention which is why they repeat the instructions for each and every flight.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 6:47 am
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How do people manage to get off the plane if they can’t work the seatbelts?!?!
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Old Dec 21, 19, 6:58 am
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Four days ago, on a flight from Kathmandu to Bangkok, I had to help the middle aged Nepali woman next to me fasten (and unfasten) her seat belt.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 7:48 am
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Originally Posted by jbjelloid View Post
Four days ago, on a flight from Kathmandu to Bangkok, I had to help the middle aged Nepali woman next to me fasten (and unfasten) her seat belt.
Had to do the exact same thing on PDX-AMS (or vice versa)
older gentleman couldn’t figure it out after a number of attempts.

it happens.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 7:48 am
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Even though I have flown over 2 m miles, I still pay attention to the safety briefing. These briefings are to orient the pax's mind set. It is the same reason to look for fire exits each time I stay at a hotel as well as reviewing the opening mechanism of the exits each I sit in the exit row. It is the mindfulness that help a person react correctly in time of emergency. As FINKFACE mentioned, muscle memory and person habits can play a trick during an emergency. Seat belt demo also serves a reminder to buckle up. Thankfully, never encountered (knock on wood) an emergency but have forgotten to buckle up once or twice.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 7:59 am
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Yeah sorry, Let's keep the safety announcements
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Old Dec 21, 19, 8:21 am
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Originally Posted by frugal_flyer View Post
Am I the only one who really wonders how serious airlines are about safety when the instructions for buckling the seat belt are given as the plane is readying for takeoff?
What’s really irksome is that they often don’t tell passengers how to fasten the seat belt until after the “fasten seat belts” sign is illuminated.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 8:45 am
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On the first flight I had with my son, he needed instructions on how to unlock the safety belt. His only prior experience had been in cars where you push a button to release it. That moment is one of my most adorable flight memories.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 8:53 am
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Originally Posted by Ilove2fly View Post
Even though I have flown over 2 m miles, I still pay attention to the safety briefing. These briefings are to orient the pax's mind set.
The point about mindset is important. I do some side work as an instructor at a private shooting club. Before each session there is a safety briefing. No exceptions even though I might have instructed the same group that morning or whether experienced shooters have heard the same briefing a hundred times before. It focuses the squad and reinforces that we are serious about safety.
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Old Dec 21, 19, 1:29 pm
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Watch other passengers attempt to unfasten their seatbelts. It can remarkable how many people fumble.
Now imagine that if there is a sense of panic or urgency, reduced visibility, smoke, yelling.
Imagine trying to extricate the people seated near you if they cannot unfasten their belts.
Things get even more complicated in premium cabin seats that have a "sash" belt.

I do watch the demo every time, or I at least sort-of pay attention. I ask myself the following:
  • Does the door closest to me open in to the cabin, up in to the ceiling, or does it open outwards and to the side?
  • Where are the two closest doors anyway?
  • Is there a lever on the door itself, or is it next to the door?
  • Are there doors on this plane that cannot be used on water evacuations?
  • Are there slides, or is this plane low enough to the ground that one does no use a slide? Are they dual or single-lane slides?
  • Does this seat have a life vest, or does one use a seat cushion only?
  • Where will an oxygen mask come from? Or is this not a pressurized airplane?
Sure, there are cabin crew in the event of an emergency, but what if one cannot see or hear the crew? What if they are incapacitated?
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