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We all know the rule: All electronic devices must be turned off and stowed away below 10,000 feet. It's a rule that's caused plenty of flights to turn around, go back to the gate, and unload the occasional unruly and belligerent passenger who doesn't want to comply. A lot of people (including Alec Baldwin) it's a rule that may be more trouble then it's worth.
Especially when considering the fact that almost half of everyone flying will cop to disobeying the rule.
In a study conducted by the Consumer Electronics Association released yesterday, they found that of everyone surveyed:
- 30% of those surveyed admitted to "accidentally" leaving their portable electronic devices on during flights. Whoops.
- 21% of those surveyed admitted to not turning their PEDs off, but instead just activating the airplane mode.
- And only 59% of everyone surveyed will actually say they turn their devices off. Which doesn't account for the liars among them.
The FAA insists that the rule is there to prevent possible interference with airplanes' navigational instruments, but—as plenty of people and articles have demonstrated—there's no evidence to support cell phones actually interfering with commercial airliners navigational systems.
Better safe than sorry? Sure. We guess.
But it's also slightly disturbing that there are a bunch of people out there who think leaving their phone on could cause a plane to crash, and a bunch of people who know those people are out there, who do leave their phone on. Which means, on some level, they are okay if not condone the very slim, unlikely possibility or fear—if not theirs, then someone else's—that their plane might crash. Which is supremely dark, frightening, and kind of funny, too.