Earlier this month, the USA’s Department of Homeland Security floated the notion of a ban on laptops and tablets on all flights to the US from Europe.
The proposal would essentially see restrictions already in place on flights from Turkey and some countries in the Middle East (such as Qatar and the United Arab Emirates) expanded to include countries in Europe.
Just to be clear, this didn’t mean passengers couldn’t bring these items with them on a flight – they just would not be allowed to take them into the cabin and instead would have to check them in as luggage.
Now it seems that the Department of Homeland Security is considering banning electronic devices bigger than a smartphone from the cabins of all flights going into and out of the USA. Hey, if you’re going to inconvenience travellers, shouldn’t you at least be fair about it?
In an interview with Fox News at the weekend, US Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said that he would “raise the bar” on airline security measures. When asked point blank if he would implement a ban on electronic devices on all flights coming into and going out of the USA, Kelly said he “might”.
“There’s a real threat,” Kelly told Fox News. “Numerous threats against aviation, that’s really the thing that they are obsessed with, the terrorists, the idea of knocking down an airplane in flight, particularly if it’s a US carrier, particularly if it’s full of mostly US folks, people. It’s real.”
Right now, this global ban is only being talked about. Here’s hoping it doesn’t go through because if you’ve ever tried to do work on a smartphone inflight you’ll it’s not exactly the best platform for it.