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Off in the distance
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May 2016

The Bellinghman
Date: 2006-04-11 14:48
Subject: Mobile phone paranoia strikes again
Security: Public
I've found it somewhat amusing that the airlines are terrified of the humble mobile phone. Indeed, EasyJet will tell you not to turn your phone off until you are actually inside the arrivals building, for fear of igniting the aviation fuel.

This is despite the fact that experiments to actually ignite a critical concentration of fuel vapours lead to the conclusion that it is not the cellphone one need ban, it is static-inducing clothing such as the nylon shell suit. And quite possibly all other clothing, not to mention hair. So, for consistency, the airlines should insist on all passengers being stark naked and depilated from scalp to (hobbit?) toe, before their mobile phones need be worried about.

(A more scary thing to consider aboard an aircraft is difficult to think of.)

So the news that a pilot lost his phone in the cockpit, thereby preventing a flight from taking off, is darkly amusing.
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User: vatine
Date: 2006-04-11 13:52 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
when RyanAir topped up the fuel on an airframe I was inside, I wasnm't allowed to have my belt buckle locked. This amused me no end (sitting above the wing, as I was, in a window seat, I would probably not had time to do very much before getting a face-full of flame, shout things have gone that way).
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(no subject) - (Anonymous)
User: redcountess
Date: 2006-04-11 16:49 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yeah, my understanding of the mobile phone thing was that it interfered with comms and other systems on an airplane, not avgas.
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User: crazyscot
Date: 2006-04-11 14:17 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
You don't expect fuel to be lying around on the apron. If it were, you'd expect random fires from stray fuel being ingested into jet engines, and that strikes me as an awful lot more of a risk than sparks from mobile phones.

Wearing my low-category airfield firefighter's helmet for a moment, I should point out that a fuel spillage (avgas or avtur) covering an area of 2m^2 or greater is classified as a major spillage and should automatically cause a 999-equivalent response - normal procedure would be to damp it down with foam and get people away (and then the senior fire officer present decides what to do next, and I'm not one of those). I can also state from my limited experience of hot fire drills that that sort of area is more than enough to provide quite a fearsome flame and heat within seconds, so the categorisation is well-justified.
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Barry: 01 CCDE Waiting
User: hobnobs
Date: 2006-04-11 16:57 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:01 CCDE Waiting
>it is not the cellphone one need ban, it is static-inducing clothing
>such as the nylon shell suit

Are you referring to Richard Hammond and his excuse to blow up another caravan? (I loved that one) :)
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The Bellinghman
User: bellinghman
Date: 2006-04-11 21:08 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)

Oh, let's face it, no excuse for blowing up or otherwise demolishing a caravan seemed to pass Hammond and his muckers by.
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User: hobnobs
Date: 2006-04-11 22:33 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I think I like the Snooker Table experiment the most. It was especially funny watching the blue ball being potted, when the referee legged it before the ball even hit the pocket. :)
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