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Monday, April 26, 2010

Chp 294. Emergency exits.

Something that I’ve been noticing for quite some time now… are you an emergency exit material?

No I’m not talking about how fast you can jump from the second floor when your girlfriend’s father suddenly returns from work, earlier than usual.

The emergency exit in an aeroplane is quite a special place. If you haven’t noticed it yet, let me tell you that not anybody can just sit in those seats. If you are disabled, crippled, sick, a child, or past your prime, then expect the stewardess to politely ask you to shift your seat.

[Pics below were taken during my recent Kol-Mum flight]

Emergency Exit

The owner of the bag that you see in front of me, was obviously asked to move it as you cannot keep any baggage on the floor in this area.

Emergency Exit

The people who get to occupy these seats (or the entire row) are young, fit, and usually male.

So why are people asked to change their seats? Why can’t the person issuing the tickets give them non-emergency exit seats in the first place? These are the questions you might ask. Well, I do not work in the aviation industry, but my assumption is that not every aeroplane has the same seating arrangement/numbering, so that is why emergency exit seat numbers differ from plane to plane. Anybody with factual knowledge on this can correct me if I’m mistaken.

And so young jocks are asked to occupy these seats, in the hope that in case of an actual emergency, we they will immediately swing into action and open the emergency doors in one swift strike like Sir Lancelot, hence saving all the passengers and becoming folklore heroes, and have minstrels singing about them for ages to come...

Yeah right.

Ever tried opening one of these doors?

Me neither.

So what makes you think that just because you’ve got an athletic build and young and pumped up with testosterone, you will rise to the occasion? Doing something you’ve never done before in your entire life with the only source of “experience” being a flimsy cartoon manual lying in front of you (ok no dirty thoughts now)... Seriously, is that really enough to be entrusted with the lives of all those around you?

Ah, heavy burden isn’t it? Like the weight of the entire world resting on your shoulder while you have a cast on both your arms...

Sure I love sitting in the emergency exit. If the stewardess asks me if I am willing to shift my seat to the emergency exit, I have no problem darling. Wider leg space is all it takes to have a refreshing flight.

But to be honest, I really don’t know if I am up to it. Ever been caught in an emergency situation? In case of fire or earthquake, please form a single file and move towards the exit in an orderly fashion… Haha, in your dreams. One single minor tremor and its pandemonium all over. People running over each other, screaming, shrieking, shoving, jostling, every man for himself. I would most probably be crushed to death from people behind as I try to open the door.

What I’m thinking is that, there should be an actual certified course regarding the emergency exit.

Like, for starters, people who actually need to be told the following instruction given below (again, taken in the same Kol-Mum flight) should no way be near any exit point, however strong and sturdy they may be!

Door close warning

Yes, seriously, do not open the door during take-off and landing. Doh.

The course should teach people how to open the emergency door in an actual simulated environment, like the way young stewardess-wannabes are trained at Air-hostess Academy, like Kingfisher. And once people are qualified enough to “graduate”, they receive a photo id of some sort (eg: Certified Emergency Exit Citizen Marshal or something like that). And every time they fly, all they have to do is whip out their ID à la FBI, and sit in the emergency exit.

This way it is much safer for the rest of the passengers too because there is now a person qualified enough to do the needful.

It also saves our male ego from any embarrassment. Suppose I am already sitting in the emergency exit and a stewardess comes up to me to remind me where I am sitting and whether I am up to the task, you really think I will say no in front of everybody, especially if there’s a hot chick nearby I’m trying to impress? Of course not! I’m a man.

Be a man.


dr_feelgood said...

So you are safely back in Mumbai.Hope your trip was good, and obviously you had plenty of thoughts to occupy your mind on your flight.
Sorry couldn't meet you in Aizawl. Its a pity our Senior Misual Boss Pu mzvision is out of town, or he'd have organised a dinner for you and invite the more senior misual netizens and talk nonsense over vawksa rep and whatever.

Jerusha said...

You're back! Must be pretty bad going from cold, rainy Mizoram to hot stuffy Mumbai :P

I've always wondered about these emergency doors myself. I've never felt reassured by the young dumb looking jocks they pick to sit on these all important seats :D

illusionaire said...

@ dr_feelgood: Yeah, sorry we couldn't meet. Was looking forward to meeting all the senior members, but it was difficult searching for your respective phone numbers etc. Next time... :)

@ Jerusha: hihihi... And I'm sure you'll do a much better job than most of these guys too when it comes to ripping the door open etc :)

Shual-i said...

Back in Mumbai. And you never invited me to your many parties in Aizawl :((
Never noticed the emrgency exits. I always thought i'd smash the windows and jump out if we crashed...but then again, those windows are pretty thick, right?

illusionaire said...

Well, from the manuals I have read, the cabin has to be depressurized first otherwise it is impossible to open the door...

And oh, don't get me started on the invitations. Grrrr....

Joseph L said...

So... you've switch ON your phone?! :-)

Emergency door zawna thut hi a nuam, ke a thluan theih..a zau bik space hi.. lol

illusionaire said...

HAHAHAHA... You caught me. Guilty as charged. But then, there was no signal anyway, and my Aizawl Aircel sim card doesnt have roaming even if there was signal 35,000 feet above sea level. :)

odzer said...

So basically most hijackers would make perfect Emergency exit material. Usually they are able bodied males pumped full of testosterone.

Varte said...

Vawi khat chu Emergency exit-ah hian ka thu fuh tawh, Air hostess-in a tih dan min sermon khum nghek, thlamuanga thut a har ve mai mai khawp mai, eng em kan tawk ta lo hlauh. Lo chesual ta ila, chet ka la thei angem tih ka ngaihtuah buai. View from the Top tih film kha ka hrechhuak rum rum...

aduhi said...

Hmanni khan Azl-Kol ah khan emergency exit bulah nula pakhat nen kan thu a, kan sawi vel mai mai a, emergency lo thleng ta se a kawngkhar kha lakthlak a har hmel e kan tia. A rih zawng kha 15 kg (33 pounds) a la ni zui a, emergency manganthlak deuh lai chuan han phih thlak lawp mai kha rinaiin a har ve fu ang.

illusionaire said...

@ odzer: haha.. lolz. I guess they prolly do! But I would feel safer it it was Arnold Schwarzenegger sitting in that seat :D

@ Varte: lolz, air hostess chuan a va rin loh hmel che ve.... flight chhung chuan i melh ran reng mai lo maw, a exit lai chu? :D

@ Aduhi: 15 kgs te chu a rit vak a mi? Emergency lai leh phei phei chuan there are known incidents of a mother lifting a car to save her baby due to sudden adrenalin rush. Similarly, you will definitely be able to do a mere 15 kgs when it is a matter of life and death. :)

Peer Gynt said...

"athletic build and young and pumped up with testosterone".

...hemmm. 've been placed in the emergency seat far too often to feel too flattered bout it :D

but can't really blame em. musta prolly been mistaken for a guy..what with the beard and whiskers i insist on sporting these days. koff, its in don't you know? :D

SummerDiary said...

why would an earthquake affect a flight?

Kym said...

They never let me sit near the door. May be its high time I think about why they don't....:P

Anonymous said...

Forget the emergency exits! I don't think it has ever been much use anyway, esp. on the Kol-Azl flight. Not trying to be a pessimist, but even the lifejackets/floatation device/silicon implants(hehe!) below each seat is simply a ridiculation of the passengers, giving false security. :P
And, I've sat on the emergency exit, in a Vayudoot! Small sense of security there, never sat since. Too much responsibility, got enough problems of my own.. :P

illusionaire said...

@ Peer: lolz. Hey, I think we've met before then. Saw a bearded Amish dude sitting by the exit on one of my flights. Didnt know that was you! :D

@ Summer Diary: Was talking about any emergency situation in general when I mentioned the earthquake :)

@ Kym: Hahaha... now you know why :D

@ Blackestred: I remember people actually used to steal the life jackets from under those seats!!! :) Vayudoot had an emergency exit? wow. I think the main door itself was the size of an emergency exit. :D

Blind Dayze said...

he heee love this post... as it is im aviophobic me of little faith.. im no man for the emergency exit seat.

mesjay said...

Airplane YMA seat i chang ani mo?

Even those routine emergency safety measures demoed by the pretty airhostesses only make me hope such situations don't arise.

rasananda said...

I am blog.and emergency the more senior misual netizens and talk nonsense over and what ever

Sekibuhchhuak said...

A thu tur awm tak an thut tir a ni maw :-) E Xit lai hi ka dil thin. thluan duai theih a:-)

illusionaire said...

@ Blind: lolz... yes, the day you die in a plane crash... :)

@ Mesjay: All of us wish the same thing too. :)

@ rasananda: ermm... ok. :)

@ Sekibuhchhuak: haha... mahse hei kan dul te a han kiar zel a, emergency seat pawh kan chang khat ta telh telh mai :D

Eveline said...

"The people who get to occupy these seats (or the entire row) are young, fit, and usually male."
Umm... that's so not true!
I'm anything but fit or male... but they always seat me near the emergency exit. Maybe I remind them of Wonder Woman. Y'know it's possible.

I hate flying in general,although I fly quite often. But once on the plane, listening to the flight attendent give the usual emergency lowdown and reading the emergency pamphlet gives me enough of a false sense of security to get through the flight... so really i'm not worried so much about sitting next to the emergency exit.

zualbonez said...

I'm always asked to occupy these seats..They don't even have recliners and therefore a pain when one only wants to quietly sleep one's hangover away...ka luak an ti chhuak

mangbuhril said...

that's one adv. of being a well-built and fit man, i made it a point to always request this emergency seat during check-in, more leg space, and more attention from those air-hostess ...huh

illusionaire said...

@ Eve: "Usually" dear. I didn't say "always" :) And of course you look fit enough to sit in that place, hence the reason you are asked to. I would feel safe when I am with you all alone walking in a dark alley in an unsafe neighborhood in the middle of the night. ;)

@ zualbonez: Ah yes. No recliners. hihi. But at least there is a large leg room! :D

@ Mang: Hahahaha yes, a lot of attention from the airhostess. Totally worth it! :D

David Ralte said...

Hlauhna in mihring a tuam tawh chuan, Sudden Muanga pawhin Buhfai quintal 2 a zakzeh zo a lawm, mak deuh a nia. Kan tih theih awm loh pui pui hi rikrum thilah chuan kan ti thei.

Kei pawh, kan naupan laiin kawmchhak te serthlum kan ru a, a kungah ka lawn, a nei tupa a rawn lang thut chu, ft 10 vel lai atang hian ka zuang thla, ka na miah lo. Rikrum thil chu ni lo se, ka zuang thla ngam teuh lo.

Be a Man, man!!! :)

Te-a Colney said...

Tuirial Airfield atanga Viadoot an ti emawni-a kalkat kan thlawh thlak tumin, khua a chhe nasa lutuka, chhum chungah darkar 2 zet kan invawrh chho lauh lauh mai chu, Emergency exits hi ka melh ran ran mai asin.

Hetia i thu ziak thlir theia ka la awm hi, Emergency exits hman ngai lova dam tea ka tum leh thei kha a ni.

faka said...

I once sat in the emergengy exit seat and was asked to move my guitar which I put beside my seat. I was wondering how would I jump off if something went wrong while flying 40,000 feet high! Btw, I'm sure this area is the right place for long legs like mine:)

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