John F. Kennedy International Airport's control tower with a few jetBlue Airbus A320's in front
Ah, “Bring Your Kid To Work Day,” is a classic. It is nice that your children are able to see what mommy and daddy do all day and your co-workers get to meet your little ball of joy you talk about so much.
However there are some jobs that it might be best for your child to skip visiting. On the surface it might seem harmless to bring your child to work if you are an air traffic controller. Maybe during your time off you can show him the view, let him see those big radar screens and listen to some of your co-workers in action.
Well, one traffic controller at JFK wanted his kid to get the full experience and let him talk to pilots. On a recording found on Gadling, it is quite clear the child is talking directly to the pilots, being assisted by his parent. The pilots don’t seem too put off by this, but the FAA sure isn’t amused.
An FAA spokesperson stated, “Pending the outcome of our investigation, the employees involved in this incident are not controlling air traffic. This behavior is not acceptable and does not demonstrate the kind of professionalism expected from all FAA employees.”
Sure, this might have been a little more “fun” at a smaller airport directing Cessna 172’s, not at JFK, directing large Boeing 747’s. I know I would feel a bit more comfortable knowing there aren’t children directing my next flight out of JFK.
TSA not up to the job. Check on the Image link below for the story on this picture!
Is the TSA going crazy? Yes! At least in my opinion. I won’t get into how silly it is for me to take off my shoes every time I fly because of something someone tried to do eight years ago. That seems kind of old school now. I think I should talk more about the recent developments.
If you haven’t heard already, on Christmas Day, a man tried to blow up Delta Airlines flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit. Long story short (not to down play the incident), the man tried to detonate explosives on the plane that were sewn into his clothes. Luckily, it failed, passengers were able to restrain him, and the Airbus 300 with all 278 people aboard was able to land safely. The man claims al Qaeda connections, but those have not been confirmed.
Yes, someone trying to kill almost 300 people is a HORRID act and should not be glossed over. However, having a bad knee-jerk reaction is not the right move. Homeland Security and TSA announced some pretty crazy rules after this incident. These rules were made just for international flights coming to the US and here are a few of my favorite:
* Passengers were not able to get out of their seats during the last hour of flight. This makes little sense to me. If someone wanted to blow up a plane, it would be easy to do it any other time. Yes, terrorists want to make the biggest scene possible and exploding a plane right before landing, but I doubt this rule would stop someone from blowing up or hi-jacking a plane.
* Disabling of all GPS systems on aircraft. Many international aircraft have in-flight entertainment systems (IFE) with a map showing where the aircraft current location. If an airline cannot disable the GPS separately from the IFE, the whole system must be disabled. That means if you paid more to fly on an airline with a great IFE, you won’t be able to enjoy it. This seems like one of the craziest rules, because: #1 someone could bring a portable GPS system, #2 you can have a basic idea where you are by simple math, #3 just look out the window.
* Passengers are being frisked more. TSA is telling passengers to expect to be patted down at the gate before boarding. On the outside this seems like it might actually help, but the most recent terrorist had the explosives sewed into his clothes. I also don’t appreciate being patted down by some stranger to go visit my family.
Already the TSA is backing down on some of their requirements. TSA is saying that airlines can once again use their IFE and passengers do not need to stay seated during the last hour of the flight. Doesn’t the fact that the TSA is loosening their restrictions show even they realize this was a knee-jerk reaction and doesn’t provide any real security?
Of course I do not want a plane to be hi-jacked or be blown up, but I am not willing to give up my personal rights, my privacy or have a huge inconvenience for a very, very, very low chance of something happening.
The reality is, if someone wants to blow up a plane, it is not that difficult. Look at this most recent incident; he had so many indicators, but was still able to get onto the plane. There are so many security holes, with a little effort and enough people, this can happen again, even with huge security reforms. I am not going to let this scare me into not flying and I hope it doesn’t stop you.
A Batavia Air Boeing 737 that was at the Ngurah Rai Airport in Indonesia had some issues with one of its engines and caused passenger panic. Airport Commander, Lt. Col. Aldrin P. Mongan, stated “, there was a blast-like sound which shook the plane when the second engine was turned on.”
The blast caused smoke, which caused some passengers to think the plane was on fire. “[Passengers] demanded the cabin crew to open the emergency exit door and some of them jumped off disorderly. They jumped before the slider came out,” Ketut Parwa, the head of the Bali rescue team stated. Three passengers jumped out of the aircraft and all were injured.
The act of these passengers is very selfish. It seems they were not listening to the flight crew and put other people’s lives at risk. However, I don’t know how I would react if I was on a plane and honestly thought it was on fire. Especially when knowing all Indonesian airlines (except Garuda Indonesia) are banned from flying to the European Union since 2007 due to their poor safety record.