Electronic Gadgets Banned on International Flights
The UK has banned electronic gadgets on international flights from seven countries, following a similar ban in the US.
Canada and EU countries have not yet joined the ban. The Donald Trump administration has banned electronic gadgets aboard the flights from eight Middle Eastern and North African countries, including Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. The policy in question covers the international airlines only, and only the cabin luggage.
In the UK, the ban will affect inbound flights from Middle Eastern countries such as: Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia, and will be required both for home and international carriers.
The home companies to put the new regulations in effect are:
- British Airways
- Thomas Cook
The international airlines will have to comply with the new regulations as well if they operate in the following airports:
- Turkish Airlines
- Pegasus Airways
- Atlas-Global Airlines
- Middle East Airlines
- Royal Jordanian
- Tunis Air
Passengers aren’t allowed to have gadgets over a certain size in their cabin luggage. The cabin luggage ban covers all electronic items with built-in batteries and plugs, that are larger than 16cm long, 9.3cm wide, and 1.5cm deep.
Laptops, tablets, phones, e-readers, cameras, and portable DVD players should be left in the hold luggage that will be properly checked and packed. However, medical equipment is excluded from the ban list. Info leaked, that ISIS is working to build explosives and controls into gadgets and portables. So, passengers will have to hand in not only their bottled drinks and perfumes, but also their electronics.
Many aviation-security experts predict a mayhem in airports while passengers are handing in their gadgets to the checked luggage. It will wreak havoc on airports logistics as well.
The ban is mainly to appease the anxiety of John Citizen, rather than to really improve the situation. After all, there were no bombs on the planes during the 9/11 attacks. Most of the terroristic attacks in America, France, and the UK were organized by long-time residents who had jobs, houses, and families. Most of the top gadgets, however, are smaller than the banned size. For instance, the iPhone 7 Plus measures 15.8cm x 7.8cm x 0.73 cm, and the Samsung Galaxy s7 Edge measures 15.9 x 7.6 x 0.7 cm, while the Kindle Paperwhite measures 16.9cm x 11.7cm x 0.91cm, and thus is banned. However, the Kindle has no powerful CPU and cannot be ‘flashed’ to feature any other OS than the one pre-installed by Amazon. Smart watches are certainly small enough to escape the ban, but are very powerful. When when paired with a smartphone, it has the upper hand over a two-year old laptop.
The British authorities declared that the safety of British nationals will be the top priority, while the United States skated over the direct questions as to why this ban was initiated in the first place. Also, no definite punishment has been defined for passengers who break the regulations. Whether they’ll be stopped from getting aboard until further investigation of the issue, or if they will have to pay a considerable fine remains unclear. It’s also unclear if the ban is mandatory for pilots and the crew.
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Credit image: Nick Warner