Topic Author
Posts: 183
Joined: Wed May 26, 1999 9:00 am

Shades Open For Night Landings

Thu Feb 27, 2003 3:32 pm

I was on a flight from Philadelphia (A-320) this past evening and our before-landing cabin announcement told us to open all window shades for landing.

Mine was already opened but I started to wonder what the reasoning was. Why do the window shades need to be opened for landing at night? Airline rule? Safety? Looks???

I’m not desperate to know, just curious!

Remember when sex was safe and flying was dangerous?
Posts: 530
Joined: Tue May 15, 2001 3:51 am

RE: Shades Open For Night Landings

Thu Feb 27, 2003 3:39 pm

The reason for leaving the shades open is that in the event of a emergency landing. Passengers will be able to see out of the windows during egress. A Usair 737 crashed back in the early nineties in LA. A contributing factor to the deaths of the passengers was the inability to see that there was a fire and obstacles at the over wings exits, which would have prohibited evacuation.

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Joined: Sat Apr 14, 2001 5:59 pm

RE: Shades Open For Night Landings

Thu Feb 27, 2003 4:09 pm

That's right.

As F/A's we are trained to always "assess" conditions outside of the airplane before operating any exit. If a F/A had to make their way up the aisle to the overwing exits in an emergency, he/she would be checking outside conditions before commanding PAX which ones to open. (If they hadn't already opened them.) Having the window shades open already would help in doing that.

At AA its not our procedure to tell people to open their window shades for takeoff and landing, but I know they used to do it at TWA. At AA its part of our commands (Out of my way! Raise those shades!) However, I always tell people seated in exit rows to open them. It just makes sense.
"Reality has a well-known liberal bias." --Stephen Colbert
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RE: Shades Open For Night Landings

Thu Feb 27, 2003 4:35 pm

It's also the practice at SQ to have shades open for take-offs/landings, they even include it in their pre-takeoff/landing announcements. I always assume it's safety-related.
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RE: Shades Open For Night Landings

Thu Feb 27, 2003 4:47 pm

Besides who in their right mind would want their window shades closed during takeoff/landing, the best parts of the flight??? Personally i hate being stuck in a middle seat in a widebody and seeing someone in the same row with a window seat but with closed shades- if they don't want to look outside then let someone else
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Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2001 7:01 am

RE: Shades Open For Night Landings

Thu Feb 27, 2003 5:06 pm

This is just a guess of mine, but wouldn't it also be a good idea to keep the shades open so that a passenger might be able to see flames, oil, or something loose coming off the wing that the pilots may not recognize? At least you could tell the FA and have them tell the pilot.
My posts/replies are strictly my opinion and not that of any company, organization, or Southwest Airlines.
Posts: 2613
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2000 8:11 pm

RE: Shades Open For Night Landings

Thu Feb 27, 2003 7:02 pm

In our airline the window shades must be open for all takeoffs and landings (day or night) for the reasons already stated. The cabin crew will ask you to raise the blind to fully open even if you have it half closed before landing.
I used to love the smell of Jet-A in the morning...

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