Following the US Federal Aviation Administration’s lead in early November, the EU’s Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has updated guidance on the use of portable electronic devices on board, including smartphones, tablets and e-readers, confirming that devices may be kept switched on in “Flight Mode” throughout all phases of flight without posing a risk to safety.
EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas has asked EASA to accelerate its safety review of the use of electronic devices on board in transmitting mode, with new guidance expected to be published early in 2014.
“We all like to stay connected while we are travelling, but safety is the key word here. I have asked for a review based on a clear principle: if it’s not safe it should not be allowed, but if it is safe, it can be used within the rules. Today we are taking a first step to safely expand the use of in-flight electronics during taxiing, take-off and landing. Next we want to look at how to connect to the network while on board. The review will take time and it must be evidence-led. We expect to issue new EU guidance on the use of transmitting devices on board EU carriers within the next year.”