After the European Aviation Safety Agency ("EASA") has
announced that it allows electronic devices to remain
"On" and "Connected" throughout the flights on
26 September 2014, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation of
Turkey ("DGCA") was expected by Turkish airline companies
to issue a guidance on this issue.
DGCA has finally issued a guideline, as expected, that defines
the rules for use of portable electronic devices on 31 October 2014
and published it on its web-site.
Accordingly, before allowing the use of portable electronic
devices on the plane, the operators should be sure that there is no
impact on the safety of aircraft operation of these devices. The
operator is required to ensure that portable electronic devices do
not have any impact on aircraft 's electronic systems, hardware
and particularly affect the transmission and communications
systems. In evaluation of the conditions for the use of portable
electronic devices, the possibility of different effects at
different places of the aircraft (passenger areas, cockpit,
inaccessible places during the flight) should be considered. The
operators are required to define precisely the term of use of
portable electronic devices in determination of the relevant type
of aircraft and weather conditions and announce through its
communication channels aiming to inform the passengers in
The operators are also required to develop a procedure
aircraft is not affected by the signals sent by such devices where
they are on.
This procedure should be in complete control of the
operator's initiative as consisting of the briefings will be
given on the terms of using and keeping of such devices with all
details and trained to all crew and the ground staff. The use of
portable electronic devices is not allowed unless the operators
provide manuals specifying all issues pertaining the use of
portable electronic devices and such devices are used as fixed to
avoid any risk during the flight. However using a portable
electronic device as fixed seems enough strange and the aim of such
a regulation is proposed to create question marks in mind. The
operators are also required to give instruction cards to passengers
carrying out their power suppliers and provide all portable
electronic devices to be removed from power units and switched off
during taxi, take off, approach, landing, abnormal and emergency
As part of risk assessment procedure, the operators are required
to determine the threats against safety and implement the
procedures to manage the commons risks on system and hardware. The
use of portable electronic devices at the different places and
phases of the flight, during turbulence, keeping of those properly,
the risks during evacuation, disobedience of the passengers and
battery fires to should be taken into consideration for risk
assessment. The passenger safety instruction cards defining the
rules and standards for use of portable electronic devices and
specific to each aircraft type are also required to be placed in
aircrafts. The operators should also set the standards with
consistent and fair approach for appropriate and effective
coordination between cockpit and the cabin crew for cases that may
cause confusion or violation of safety and security arising out of
the use of portable electronic devices. Incidents having effect on
safety applications and suspected cases should be reported without
any delay and the operators should assist the technical
investigation process defining the suspect device brand and model,
at the time of the incident and the position in the aircraft.
The rules for the use of portable electronic devices should be
announced before the passengers fasten seat belts and it should be
specified clearly that passengers should respect to the
instructions given by the crew. The crew is also kept responsible
to have in-luggage devices switched off during the flight. Medical
devices used in order to support physical function are allowed to
be used at any time and the guideline sets out that there is no
need to shut down such devices.
Like defined in EASA guidance, DGCA also requires the airline
companies to go through an assessment procedure and to ensure the
aircraft systems are not affected by the signals.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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