The reasons for the irritating many tourists' appeal of flight attendants with the call to “open the porthole blinds” during takeoff and landing was told by the pilot of British Airways. According to him, there are two such reasons, and both of them are for security reasons, but the first is more “designed” for tourists, and the second for flight attendants.
“If you've noticed, in addition to the call to open the window shades, we always turn off the lights in the cabin during landing. This is done so that the human eye can get used to the level of light outside the liner, ”the expert said. According to him, in the event of any emergency and an urgent need to leave the cabin, it is extremely important that the passenger can quickly navigate what is happening outside the aircraft and not wait until his eyes get used to the darkness or against bright light.
“It's kind of a 'just in case' approach that we're taking for the safety of our passengers,” added the pilot.
The second reason is in fact the same – only the personnel “have to” quickly orient themselves in the situation behind the windows of the aircraft. Flight attendants need open curtains on the windows in order to quickly navigate the “situation” at the landing site. For example, in order to organize the safe evacuation of passengers during an emergency landing.
Recall that earlier, for tourists, “why” was presented the answer to the question why all the windows of the aircraft have a rounded shape. The reason for this, of course, is structural – and it is “justified” by two disasters that occurred at the dawn of the development of passenger jet aviation in the 50s of the 20th century. One of the first developments in this area, the de Havilland Comet aircraft, which first took to the skies in 1949 and went into commercial use in 1952, had “classic” square windows. As a result, in 1954, two liners crashed at once. First, on January 10, 1954, Flight 781 departed Rome's Ciampino Airport for London. There were 35 passengers on board. And literally 15 minutes after the flight, the plane literally “crumbled” in the sky and fell into the Mediterranean Sea. All passengers died. A few months later, a second accident occurred – South African Airways Flight 201 from London to Johannesburg crashed at sea, killing 21 people. At the same time, as the researchers showed, both the aircraft and the discovered bodies had the same damage.
As it turned out, square windows also played an important role. Sharp corners put additional stress on the surrounding metal at high altitude – two or three times more than elsewhere on the aircraft. The stress was concentrated at the four corners of each window, causing metal fatigue. As a result, metal fatigue led to explosive decompression and destruction of the aircraft in the air. Following an investigation, de Havilland made a number of design changes to their aircraft, including more rounded windows. This experience was also used by jet aviation in general. Read the details here.
For those who care about a healthy lifestyle, we recommend reading: “Scientists have listed simple daily habits that reduce the risk of a dangerous disease.”