British Airways flight 2276 at Vegas – Photo: McCarran Airport
Today, we at AirlineReporter share two different opinions on passenger evacuations of an airliner during an emergency. In recent incidents, we have seen passengers taking their bags and people reacting. This story shares the opinion that it is not that big of a deal to take your bag and is written by an anonymous writer (that has been verified), who is a frequent flier, no stranger to the airline business, and is a writer. Be sure to read the opposite opinion and share your thoughts in the comments.
First off, I agree that probably it is best to leave your bag on a crashed/burning airliner. However, the attention that I have seen given to passengers who end up taking their bags with them during an emergency sickens me.
These people just went through a major incident, where many likely felt that they were going to die. Could you imagine going through something like that and then instead of having people asking you if you are okay, they harass you? I wouldn’t want that either. It now seems to be the popular thing to do.
If some of you will take the time to get off your high horse and read this, maybe you won’t be so quick to judge. I argue that people shouldn’t automatically be ostracized for grabbing their bag in the middle of a potentially deadly evacuation.
A flight deck of a Boeing 777.
Today, we at AirlineReporter share two different opinions on passenger evacuations of an airliner during an emergency. In recent incidents, we have seen passengers taking their bags and people reacting. This story shares the opinion that passengers should leave their bags and is written by Captain Owen Zupp, who is a published author, journalist, and experienced commercial pilot with over 17,000 hours of varied flight experience. His story was originally published on ThePilotsBlog.com and shared here, with permission. Be sure to read the opposite opinion and share your thoughts in the comments.
The smoke plume from British Airways Flight 2276 was still reaching skywards as people were posting dramatic images across the internet. Both distant shots and photos from passengers were blinking across the globe as fire crews tended to the stricken Boeing 777. It was a day and an event that aviation professionals dread, and yet it is also the very eventuality that endless hours of training have been directed towards.
Some of the damage on the British Airways 777-200ER at Vegas – Photo: NYCAviation
On the flight deck, a “rejected takeoff” is a maneuver that is part of every recurrent simulator session for pilots. Crews are tested for a range of scenarios, from engine failure and fire, to tire deflation and loss of visibility. Sometimes, the choice to reject the takeoff is obvious; in others, it is more obscure, such as when the failure occurs at low speed with its own directional control issues, or when the problem arises at high speed when the aircraft is beyond its decision speed, or ’˜V-1’, and the takeoff must continue.
The northern end of the Las Vegas Strip, with the Wynn, Encore, & Stratosphere dominating the skyline
A great way to get a different perspective of a place is to take a flight over it. Heading to somewhere you haven’t been before, well why wouldn’t you take a flightseeing trip to get that different perspective? As part of my honeymoon with my wife Heidi after our AvGeek wedding, we wanted to have a few new experiences each on this trip. One of the things that I like to do is take a helicopter ride over cities.
A Maverick Helicopters Eurocopter EC-130 Ecostar on the flightline at Las Vegas Airport
When we decided to visit Las Vegas, I really wanted Heidi to get that experience of seeing the city by hovering above (since this was her first trip to the city). This would also be not only her first visit to Vegas, but also her first helicopter flight. How could she marry an AvGeek and never have flown in a helicopter before? It was time to change that.
This mannequin is doing important experiments in the BA-330
Space… the final frontier. Sorry, I just always wanted to start a story with that and figured this was the time.
When I was recently invited down to Las Vegas to learn about Boeing’s CST-100 and Bigelow Aerospace’s BA-330 space habitat, I lit up. I love space and, even more so, commercial space. This is the area of space where maybe someday an average Joe might be able to experience what it is like to be up in the heavens. Until then, it will take companies and individuals with money to get commercial space off the ground (literally).
Once inflated, the BA-300 is quite large
The International Space Station is currently expected to have a useful lifespan until about 2020. Firms like Bigelow Aerospace are looking at ways to provide a commercial space habitat to nations and companies who are willing (and able) to pay. Although they have tried a few variants, they are putting quite a bit of effort into the BA-330 Space Habitat (no, it is not related to the Airbus A330).
It is one thing to see drawings of what the BA-330 will look like, versus having a full mock-up. And that is exactly what Bigelow had at their facility in Las Vegas – a true, life-sized version of the BA-330, and I was lucky enough to get a look inside.
View of Allegiant's entrance at their Headquarters in Las Vegas
I always enjoy it when I get the opportunity to check out an airline’s headquarters. It is an inside look at the airline’s culture and of course it is always nice to picture where they work when interacting with them as a media contact or customer.
Allegiant is located in a new business park just outside of downtown Vegas. It is away from the flashing-lights and casinos and in an area that just looks just a few years old.
When pulling up, it was not obvious it was Allegiant’s HQ since there was no signage outside, even though their roof prominently has “Allegiant” on it. However, after stepping into the lobby, there was no question.
Their lobby is two stories with two Allegiant sun’s on the floor. The best part was the replica of an MD-80 tail used as their front desk. Not too shabby. After checking in, I had the opportunity to sit down and wait on some airline seats. They were blue and leather like Allegiant’s, but quite a bit larger. They must have been taken from another airline’s first class or business seat — I wasn’t able to tell which.
Allegiant's MD-80 trainer for flight attendants.
I love walking through an airline’s operations to be reminded how most people there truly enjoy their job and have a smile. I always feel many passengers feel like there are airline people just waiting to screw them over. The nice part of Allegiant’s smaller operation is it didn’t take long to get through all departments. From those who take reservations to President and CEO’s Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr’s desk. Speaking of him, he doesn’t even have an office. All the Allegiant executives work in cubicles out in the open, bettering their interaction with other employees. Of course the executives have a little bigger than others, but they kind of deserve that.
There are also quite a few Allegiant models spread around the facility. Most are MD-80’s, but there were a few Boeing 757’s. The biggest 757 model was located right in the middle of all the executive’s cubicles (photo).
This is probably the coolest front desk ever.
A second building holds Allegiant’s training facility. They have the rear section of an MD-80 used for flight attendants. It is raised above a hole in the floor, where employees can practice evacuations. I need to find one of those for my home.
All through out the facility there was quite a bit of Allegiant spirit. Not only where many walls painted in Allegiant blue, but many desk areas were showing off holiday spirit with a decoration contest. Almost every area had decorations and one thrilled worker actually turned their cubicle into a ginger-bread house.
It is fun to imagine the folks sitting in the operation center while flying back home to Seattle, planning the aircraft’s flight and dealing deicing. I only wish they sold those tables they used as their front desk.
CHECK OUT ADDITIONAL PHOTOS OF ALLEGIANT’S HEAD QUARTERS