Plenty of people disregard orders to turn off phones and electronic devices during takeoff and landing — just put the Game Boy face down on your lap when the flight attendant walks by and pick it up a moment later.
It turns out these people really are risking a plane crash, according to an industry investigation shared with ABC News.
Pilots and engineers have identified 75 incidents which may be linked to signal interference from passengers. Among them: “Autopilot disengaged by itself,” “left GPS is not reading correctly,” and “rapid changes in cabin altitude and altitude control.”
Boeing engineer David Carson says interference occurs when signals hit highly sensitive electronic sensors hidden in the passenger area. These sensors are particularly vulnerable in old planes.
As proof Carson took reporters from ABC into a test chamber. When phones were turned on, signal interference registered above safe levels.
Here’s a video:
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