Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane?

Posted by: Michael2

Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/12/19 05:31 PM

Why Do You Grab Your Bag When Running Off a Burning Plane?

Not sure how much it would help, but perhaps the safety lecture on commercial flights could reasonably cut out the part about how to buckle a seat belt and replace it with a couple of direct statements like, "In case of an emergency evacuation, leave all overhead bins closed and leave your carry-on luggage behind."
Posted by: haertig

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/12/19 06:01 PM

I am surprised that overhead bins are not locked when the plane is in motion (i.e., not sitting parked at is origination or destination gate).

This would help with the idiots trying to drag their luggage out with them during an emergency.

And it would probably help with the inconsiderate who carry ridiculous amounts of carry-on hogging up all the bins. Once they found out the only thing you can access during the flight is the "personal item" that fits under your seat. Actually, under the seat in front of you, so that your personal item impacts your leg room, not somebody elses.

I'm talking remote controlled locks where one button push from the cockpit could lock/unlock everything at one time.
Posted by: chaosmagnet

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/12/19 08:16 PM

haertig, Iíve spent some time considering this question, and hereís what I think.

If an overhead bin wonít latch, the plane isnít allowed to leave the gate. Iíve been on a flight where one of the bins wouldnít latch and they had to move the luggage out of it, and fly with it open and empty.

What does it do to the airlineís maintenance costs and on-time performance if we add a another system that can break?
Posted by: haertig

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/12/19 09:11 PM

Everything will cost something to maintain, hard to get around that.

As far as on time performance, airlines allowing passengers to blatantly exceed carry-on baggage limits and rules certainly does not help that. And it's not so good for safety either. And this is ignoring the irritation to other passengers who follow the rules. As far as how unsafe extra baggage in the passenger compartment is, I don't know. Common sense would tell you the less the better though.

Plus, the airlines have already found a way around on-time performance. Back many years ago, the flight from Austin to Denver (one I've taken many many times) used to take a tad over 1-1/2 hours, and they advertised the flight time as 1:45. Then they started advertising it as 2:00. Now, I think they're up to advertising it as 2:15. I'm pretty sure the two cities did not move farther apart. Pretty much these days, any continental US flight could probably divert to Tasmania during an emergency, and still manage to make their scheduled destination on time. And that's with in-air refueling and a stopover in Hawaii for mandatory pilot rest.
Posted by: Jeanette_Isabelle

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/12/19 10:18 PM

I know this does not apply to all situations; I wonder how often a passenger retrieves their bag thinking "My life-saving medications are in my bag! I'll die without them." It does not have to be Rx medications. It could be something else.

In any case, if a passenger is of the mindset they are equally screwed deboarding the aircraft without their bag as they are remaining aboard a burning jet, any attempt in getting that passenger to leave their bag would further delay the deboarding process. Convincing them otherwise is futile because perception becomes a reality.

Jeanette Isabelle
Posted by: haertig

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/12/19 10:22 PM

Originally Posted By: Jeanette_Isabelle
"My life-saving medications are in my bag! I'll die without them."

Then those meds should be in their pocket or in a fanny pack attached to their body, not their carry-on bag.
Posted by: Jeanette_Isabelle

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/12/19 10:28 PM

Originally Posted By: haertig
Then those meds should be in their pocket or in a fanny pack attached to their body, not their carry-on bag.

What if those items cannot fit in her pockets and she prefers a purse to a fanny pack?

Jeanette Isabelle
Posted by: chaosmagnet

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 01:45 AM

I think we can all agree that there are trade-offs involved.

I also think we can all understand that the airlines will do whatever they can to displace risks/costs onto others (see the existence of the TSA) and minimize their already tremendous regulatory burdens (see how they lobby).

The airlines already do a good job of keeping aisles and passenger footwells clear in my experience, and US flagged airlines are extremely safe compared to other forms of transportation. What would the costs be vs. the benefits of locking overhead bins? I don't know.
Posted by: Herman30

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 04:51 AM

Originally Posted By: Jeanette_Isabelle

What if those items cannot fit in her pockets and she prefers a purse to a fanny pack?

A purse can be worn so it is on a persons body all time with the strap worn across body. That way you can jump up and start running and purse comes with you automatically.

Posted by: Tjin

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 08:46 AM

People are not rational actors. There are lots of factors involved.

- Lots of people default to routines. Need to evacuate a building? Most will take the same route as they got in.

- Our brains don't jump into the flee reflex until the last moment. Although that can be a good thing, as most will act rationally first, but a little too slow then they should.

You need to prime your brains by training. People who are used to thinking and acting quickly, be in sports of work, have an edge on this. Getting into a realistic evacuation drill on a plane is hard. But you can run the steps you need to take to evacuate the plane, front or backside, in your head.
Posted by: Jeanette_Isabelle

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 11:42 AM

Originally Posted By: Herman30
A purse can be worn so it is on a persons body all time with the strap worn across body. That way you can jump up and start running and purse comes with you automatically.

What then is the difference between a woman holding her purse during the flight and having her small bag under the seat and throw it over her shoulder before getting up?

Jeanette Isabelle
Posted by: Herman30

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 12:00 PM

Valuable seconds that might be difference between life and death in an airplane fire. When you have to evacuate a plane you do not spend one second searching for a bag. If itīs not on your body you leave it.
Posted by: hikermor

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 12:23 PM

It's a matter of priorities. The plane is an immediate threat; the absence of life saving meds not so much.

I am at the stage in life where I regularly take 'life saving" meds (blood thinner) on a daily basis and when I travel I always take an adequate supply, readily at hand. On a commercial flight I do not use the overheads, but stow a small backpack at my feet. My travel clothes have plenty of pockets, so that necessities can be kept on my person.

At an accident scene, there should be no problem securing aide for whatever meds might be lost....
Posted by: Russ

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 12:24 PM

I saw a video recently where a largish passenger on an aircraft that caught fire took the time to take his largish carry-on bag and most of the folks behind him died.

Moscow plane fire passenger accused of 'blocking aisle to grab back pack' as 41 died
&
Plane inferno survivor clutching rucksac...s from escaping

This isnít about getting those really important meds (seems like just about everybody except me is on some type of medication), this is about survival and not being the guy in the video. In an aircraft fire anything & everything that doesnít help you escape the aircraft is expendable. But there will always be people who just donít understand that seconds count. Only 3 people behind this guy survived, 41 died.
Posted by: NAro

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 01:05 PM

Originally Posted By: Tjin
Our brains don't jump into the flee reflex until the last moment. Although that can be a good thing, as most will act rationally first, but a little too slow then they should.

Not exactly accurate. After the initial "What its it?" or "orienting reflex (OR)", the automatic response is fight/flee/freeze (FFF). That's probably 400 milliseconds. To do anything else requires higher cortical functioning, and takes a moment. So no... our brains do not jump into the flee reflex at the last moment... they jump into it at the first moment.

Originally Posted By: Tjin
You need to prime your brains by training. People who are used to thinking and acting quickly, be in sports of work, have an edge on this. Getting into a realistic evacuation drill on a plane is hard. But you can run the steps you need to take to evacuate the plane, front or backside, in your head.


Yes and no: One has to be trained to quickly overcome the FFF response and THEN do something else/better. When individuals appear to NOT FFF, what's really happening is that they suppress that FFF behavior so very quickly, and move to the "something else" so very quickly, that it appears they do not have the FFF. But they do. You can not learn to do this with any mental rehearsal alone. Significant training is needed to teach someone to suppress their FFF quickly after the OR trigger. And it has to happen in the presence of a trigger or something very similar to the actual trigger... it can't be training all in your head.

I see no way to train the average airline public to overcome the FFF and behave more in line with airline attendant's instructions. In part I believe that's why they (in some airline training) are trained to scream in unison the same cues: "get out...get out.. leave your luggage...get out ...get out" The hope is to derail the passenger's luggage behavior and cue them to do the right thing... get out.
Posted by: haertig

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 05:52 PM

Originally Posted By: Jeanette_Isabelle
What if those items cannot fit in her pockets and she prefers a purse to a fanny pack?

I vote on you over carry with you every time, even if that means wearing ugly cargo pants or the fashion sin of the world, the fanny pack.

When it's on you then you are less at risk of losing control of it and being separated from your meds, and other passengers are less at risk of being blocked or slowed down as it drags and gets hung up on things on the way out. On you is a win-win for everybody.
Posted by: Tjin

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/13/19 05:54 PM

Originally Posted By: NAro

Not exactly accurate. After the initial "What its it?" or "orienting reflex (OR)", the automatic response is fight/flee/freeze (FFF). That's probably 400 milliseconds. To do anything else requires higher cortical functioning, and takes a moment. So no... our brains do not jump into the flee reflex at the last moment... they jump into it at the first moment.


No, I mean the stage in front of that. If you evacuate by waiting in the evacuation line, you are still rational.

Originally Posted By: NAro
You can not learn to do this with any mental rehearsal alone.


Yes, but again, with actual training being unpractical; that's pretty much all you can do.

I mean I can just enroll in a helicopter crash training (that's just off-shore work certification, but open to anybody), but you can't for an airliner.
Posted by: Mark_R

Re: Grabbing Your Bag When Running Off Burning Plane? - 05/17/19 07:59 PM

Just a couple of thoughts:

First people get dumb in high stress situations. Done it, seen it. It's as prevalent as group think and spectator behavior.

Second, having a small, think large point and shoot camera belt pouch, go bag. Something you can in the 2 seconds it takes to un*** your seat, with cash, documents, and medications isn't a bad. I regularly use a vest for the same purpose.

Cramming my 6 foot and change frame into an airline seat is tight enough without my thighs bulging with my go bag.