FAQ n.111042

My luggage during evacuation


In the unlikely event the safety of the aircraft and its occupants is compromised, it may be necessary to evacuate the aircraft. 
Evacuation is a fast egress from the aircraft in situations declared by cabin crew or pilots as an emergency, i.e. posing an immediate threat to passengers and crew members on board. Pilots and cabin crew are trained for such situations, however, it is essential that passengers cooperate with the crew and follow their instructions. 

Evacuation slides are used when evacuating on land and rafts are used in case of a landing on water (Note: Some aircraft types are not required to be equipped with slides or rafts. Passengers step outside through the exits or, if possible, use the aircraft’s integrated stairs). Evacuating as quickly as possible is a matter of survival.

Evacuation slide allows either one, or maximum two persons to slide down from the aircraft to the ground side-by-side. The speed at which the person reaches the ground is fast and it is essential to adopt a position to protect yourself from flailing or even falling off the evacuation slide. Evacuation raft allows a limited person/weight capacity.

Passengers and crew members must leave their luggage on board. Why is that?

Obstructions, injuries & delays during evacuation
Luggage in the overhead bins might have moved during the impact and luggage stowed under the seats may no longer be close to your seat. Opening the overhead bins may cause the luggage to fall onto you or onto other passengers causing injuries
Searching and retrieving your luggage from the overhead bins or from under the seats creates an obstruction and slows down those trying to reach the exit. They may push you down, step on you and cause you injuries preventing you from moving and leaving the aircraft. 
In addition, there may be low or no visibility at all inside the aircraft due to smoke or power failure of the lights and the aircraft may be damaged. You may trip over, fall down and injure yourself. Retrieving and taking your luggage reduces your chances and the chances of other passengers for a fast egress. 

Blocked exits
Cabin crew must evacuate all passengers from the aircraft as quickly as possible. They have no time to collect and no space to store luggage at exits. Piles of luggage may block the exit and prevent you from leaving the aircraft quickly, or at all. You will have to look for another usable exit (if there is another usable exit available).

Your protection and damaged slides
Sliding down on the evacuation slide with luggage prevents your own protection (you will not be able to adopt a position to protect yourself) and can cause injuries to you or to others. It slows down the evacuation and blocks the exit preventing it from being used by those remaining on board. Your luggage can damage the evacuation slide.
Each crew member has specific duties during an evacuation to save lives. You will be ordered to leave the aircraft without luggage. Carrying luggage slows you down and can compromise your own survival.


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