Flying today entails an endless list of rules and regulations: weighing carry-on luggage, removing shoes through security, folding up trays in-flight, keeping your safety belt buckled while seated, the list goes on and on.
As travellers concerned with general safety, we follow these rules without question and never pause to think of the reasoning behind them. But Diply, a popular news/entertainment website, recently investigated why air passengers are required to leave their window shades open during takeoff and landing, and the answer is surprisingly very simple.
Keeping window shades up while the plane is taking off or landing is mostly for the flight crew’s benefit. Since these are usually the times a possible crash would occur, unobstructed views through the windows make it easier for the crew to see any malfunctions or damage to the plane.
Plus, with all the blinds up, passengers can spot any obvious problems with the plane (fires, leaking fuel, etc.) and alert the flight crew.
In addition, the flight crew can quickly see any dangers or large objects blocking a particular exit and plan out the best way to get everyone off the plane safely.
So next time you’re on a flight and told to raise your window shade, bite your tongue and do it without complaint. It really is for your own benefit.