Sunday, January 23, 2011

Inability to Control Passengers -- China Eastern Airline


I do understand that I've flown on the cheapest available airline from Singapore to New York City (JFK) for a total cost of slightly over US$1350 (3 months stay).

As I tend to drink lots of alcohol and knock myself out, just to wake up and drink water to hydrate myself, I don't really care about which airline I fly, however, I do feel safety is a major concern even for cheap airline.

Recently, I've flown China Eastern Airlines, and I find that the way the crew members organize the passengers seemed way below par. I'm not sure it is due to the crowds not following orders, and just ignoring the rules, but it seemed pretty bad.

Sure, there are people in China who let their kids pee into rubbish bins, smoke their "smokeless" electronic cigarettes while walking at the airport, etc. Yes, they generally do not care about rules or other people.

However, an airlines inability to control the passengers may simply be a safety hazard! During boarding, the passengers simply crowd around the entrance, and try to rush on board the plane. The passengers also carry a lot of carry on luggage, way more than legally allowed. The crew does not seem to care or mind, and all luggage seem to get on board.

The passengers stay on their mp3 players, and phones even on board, and seem to talk on the phone all the way ignoring the crews' calls for them to stop.

Next, the passengers do not sit at designated seats. I believe people are allocated seat numbers, and simple rules like that are for safety reasons, as well as meal allocation, etc. But the crew is slow to help in moving the person in the wrong seat, and when the person makes a large fuss, that seem to give him the right of way??? By being loud and obnoxious?

Lastly, almost all the passengers get up from their seats once the plane hit the ground. It does not matter if the plane is traveling on high speeds, most people seem to get off their seats to get their luggage. The crew tries to get them to sit but fails miserably.

In times of peril, I wonder, will the crew be able to handle the situation to guide the passengers to safety? or will it be a tragedy? It seemed like the latter would happen and I do not have much confidence in their current ability.

-- Ironbowl

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