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Dimming Cabin Lights

Mon Sep 27, 1999 1:04 pm

Why do they dim the lights for night takeoff and landing? I was reading another topic in which this question came up and it was suggested by some that this is a FAA regulation and other suggested that it was up to the airline. In either case, why are the lights dimmed? Thanks!

Jim in Boston
 
Ansett767
Posts: 812
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 9:33 am

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Mon Sep 27, 1999 1:13 pm

They are dimmed usually for one main reason:
So that the people and crew inside can see the Emergency exit lights easier (I think?> 
Also because the need more power for Landings and Take offs: Ever noticed how the music and lights are turned down right as Full thrust is made?

Some airlines even basically turn all the lights Off.... and just eave the dimme dlights by the exits on during a night take off!
 
AWA757
Posts: 106
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 1999 2:42 am

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Mon Sep 27, 1999 1:13 pm

I think the purpose serves to make the EXIT signs more visible in the event of an emergency. Please correct me if I am wrong.
 
Clipper
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Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2005 5:00 am

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Mon Sep 27, 1999 1:27 pm

Lights are dimmed ONLY for passenger comfort, since night is when humans generally sleep. It has nothing to do with obtaining more power (ridiculous) or emergency lighting.
 
aspen1
Posts: 270
Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 7:43 am

RE: Clipper

Mon Sep 27, 1999 1:34 pm

its not rediculous on everyflight i have ever flown (thats over 200) they have always turned off the lights on a day flight or night flight during take off on landing they dim them
 
AWA757
Posts: 106
Joined: Thu Jul 22, 1999 2:42 am

RE: Clipper

Mon Sep 27, 1999 1:39 pm

Clipper - If the lights are dimmed only for passenger comfort, why do they come back on shortly after take-off? I'd like to see the F/C stumbling around in the dark trying to pass out drinks.
 
Ansett767
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Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 9:33 am

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Mon Sep 27, 1999 3:31 pm

yeh
its got bugger all to do with passenger comfort as 5 mins into the flight theyre put back on!
Even day flights theyre turned off, and bck on later:
I rekcon it has something to do with power
Any Piilots here? ?Please help us!!
 
hmmmm...
Posts: 1959
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 8:32 am

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Mon Sep 27, 1999 9:16 pm

They dim the cabin lights because safety regulations require it. In a dimmed cabin there is no glare on the inside of the cabin windows that might hinder a clear external view. In the event of a crash on landing or take-off, they want the passengers' eyes to be able to see what's going on outside. Whats worse is that, once outside, egress from a brightly-lit cabin would be hampered as the passengers' eyes would have re-adjust to the dark environment of night, effectively leaving them almost blind for a few precious seconds in which they might need to escape cleanly. Additionally, emergency exit door illumination is easier to see in a dimmed cabin should there be smoke. The amount of power it takes to light the cabin is about one-millionth of the power the engines produce.
An optimist robs himself of the joy of being pleasantly surprised
 
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chrisnh
Posts: 3329
Joined: Tue Jun 29, 1999 3:59 am

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Mon Sep 27, 1999 9:29 pm

My guess is that they want passengers' eyes accustomed to the dark in case something catastrophic happens. You all know what happens to your ability to see in the dark if lights are turned out instantly. They just want to make sure your eyesight is in 'dark' mode. Of course, they won't come right out and tell you that...but it passes my test of sensibility.
 
Guest

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Tue Sep 28, 1999 2:14 am

Ok here goes... from a F/A :
At CO the reason we either dim or turn off the lighting for take off/landing is so the crew will be able to assess conditions outside the aircraft in a emergency. If the lights were turned up there could be glare on the windows and also eyes would not be adjusted for darkness outside. The first thing we do before a possible evacuation is assess conditions outside by looking out to see what is going on (we can see things that the pilots can not) and we look for fire, smoke or water. Also yes, by having lighting turned down the exit signs and emerg path lighting will stand out but the main reason is to assess conditions.
At CO if we go by the book on lighting it would be something like this :
1. boarding -upper lighting on and sidewalls on (dim)
2. demo -upper lighting dim or off with a video and on with manual demo. sidewalls off (they remain off for passenger comfort at this point as they bother the eyes of the person in the window seat). They crew may elect some lighting on a night flight to check the cabin after the demo (seatbelts/luggage, etc).
3. takeoff -dim or off at night and can be on during the day.
4. service -upper lighting on so we can all see what we are doing.
5. after service -dim or off on a day flight and on 'night' setting for a night flight (very dim).
6. prepare for landing -upper lighting on to check the cabin again.
7. landing -same as take off.
8. arrived at gate -upper light on and sidewalls back on the same way we boarded.
9. emergency demo (to brief pax for a emerg landing/evac) -all lights to bright... this is the only time all lights go to bright except for aircraft servicing.
This is all Continental procedures and is NOT required by the FAA. Hope this helps you all out.
 
Clipper
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RE: Ansett767

Tue Sep 28, 1999 4:37 am

It's got nothing to do with power. My answer came from my father, who has flown for Delta for 37 years.
 
rpwgw
Posts: 201
Joined: Mon Jun 21, 1999 8:53 pm

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Tue Sep 28, 1999 9:16 pm

The reason is similar to why you stand in a darkened room in a nocturnal house at a zoo before going to view animals. Your pupils need to adjust to the light conditions. Think how long it takes to be able to see night animals in a nocturnal house. Going from bright light inside an aircraft to a dark night down an emergency slide ain't enough time to see where you are going and get the hell out of an emergency situation.
 
rpwgw
Posts: 201
Joined: Mon Jun 21, 1999 8:53 pm

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Tue Sep 28, 1999 9:16 pm

The reason is similar to why you stand in a darkened room in a nocturnal house at a zoo before going to view animals. Your pupils need to adjust to the light conditions. Think how long it takes to be able to see night animals in a nocturnal house. Going from bright light inside an aircraft to a dark night down an emergency slide ain't enough time to see where you are going and get the hell out of an emergency situation.
 
rpwgw
Posts: 201
Joined: Mon Jun 21, 1999 8:53 pm

RE: Dimming Cabin Lights

Tue Sep 28, 1999 9:16 pm

The reason is similar to why you stand in a darkened room in a nocturnal house at a zoo before going to view animals. Your pupils need to adjust to the light conditions. Think how long it takes to be able to see night animals in a nocturnal house. Going from bright light inside an aircraft to a dark night down an emergency slide ain't enough time to see where you are going and get the hell out of an emergency situation.

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