If you're a traveler, you're probably used to hearing the instruction "please turn off all electronic devices" when you fly. But that will soon change.
After a year of twisting arms at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to either show any evidence to back up the ban on electronic devices, or loosen the restrictions, I finally got word today the FAA has embraced the expanded use of portable electronic devices (like iPads, Kindles, and e-readers) on airplanes.
Read more about the effort HERE.
This is great news for the traveling public - and frankly, a win for common sense.
The FAA announced the results of a report by a specialized rulemaking committee, which announced that expanded use of portable electronic devices would pose no risk to the traveling public. In response, the agency initiated a plan in which airlines may submit plans for the expanded use of PEDs on their flights - plans that the FAA expects can be quickly approved. Two airlines submitted such plans today, the very first day they could do so.
Despite the news, you won't have to worry about listening to another traveler's phone conversation on your flight. Today's announcement does not include the use of cell phones on flights unless they're in "airplane mode."
After speaking personally with FAA Chief Michael Huerta this morning on the status of the committee's report, I was assured the agency plans to work directly with the airline industry to quickly relax existing regulations - a process that the FAA believes could be largely completed by the end of the year.
I held the FAA's feet to the fire to move quickly and responsibly and it has now delivered. I expect the airlines, as key partner stakeholders who helped produce the recommendations to relax current restrictions, to move quickly so that Americans flying for the holidays no longer face restrictions that make no sense.
As I continue my work as Chairman of the Consumer Production Subcommittee, I'll keep you updated on issues that impact you, the consumer.
All the best,
P.S. Have you ever been the victim of a scam or abusive and predatory practices? I want to hear from you. Tell me your story on my website, HERE.