Tag Archives: flight-attendants

“Why DO I Have to Put My Seat back Up for Takeoff?”

Jayne Waterbury & John Walker - Continental Flight Attendants

So I am sitting on a Continental flight (Love Continental Airlines) and after 30 plus years of flying I just learned something. (I always say you are never old to learn a new trick!)

As a rebel at heart, I always wondered “why do you have to put your seats in an upright position and stow everything under your seat for take off and landing”.  I always got annoyed when they wouldn’t even let me hold my pocketbook on my lap!

Does anyone know the answer to that? I sure didn’t.  Well, NEWSFLASH!  While waiting to take off on my Continental flight to visit parents, I came across the inflight magazine and a pilot’s Q & A answered my question.  I actually felt like an idiot!  It was such an obvious answer…but I had not thought of it…..

ANSWER:

Most flight accidents take place during take off and landing.  In case of emergency, it is extremely important that the aisles are absolutely clear so everyone can evacuate quickly.  I mean, imagine that 100 women have pocket books on their laps..the plane jolts…the pocketbooks go flying…landing in pathways of freedom!  OH… I GET IT NOW!

Considering that, it totally makes sense that the seats be in an upright position too.  Reclined airline seats can definitely impede someone even getting up to go to the bathroom let alone needing to evacuate suddenly!  I can testify to that at this very moment as the woman in front of me has reclined her seat fully and my laptop is currently sitting on my chest! (Try to remember that someone is sitting behind you and be courteous.)

Now I totally understand.  It is all about the escape route and keeping it clear.

Took me 30 plus year…but thank you Captain Mike Bowers.   Now instead of feeling inconvenienced, I will feel like I am doing the responsible thing!  And as usual on a Continental flight, the Flight Attendants are always so nice!  Once again, I’ve encountered professionalism along with friendliness & humor in Jayne Waterbury & John Walker on my Continental Flight # 1845.  I mean, how can I be “a rebel” to such nice people.

Have any other questions?  Write Captain Bowers at askthePilot@united.com .   And be patient…even if you don’t understand the stupid rules!  There is usually an underlying reason…..

My Rebel attitude will have to take a break…I would rather fly safe!

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