Tue, Dec 08, 2009 - Page 2 News List

CAA approves use of phones on EVA, Uni Air flights

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Passengers on EVA Airways and Uni Air international flights will soon be able to use their mobile phones on board by switching them to “flight mode,” the Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) said yesterday.

“Applications from both companies have been approved,” the CAA said in a statement. “The service is scheduled to be available next month.

The CAA said China Airlines (華航) had not filed an application for the service because it had not completed some of the required procedures, including training for flight attendants to recognize if the mobile phones are equipped with a flight mode, also known as “airplane mode,” function.

The CAA said that mobile phones that are in flight mode or not equipped with SIM cards are classified under the same category as “computers and their peripherals.” The use of such devices is prohibited throughout domestic flights.

While passengers on international flights can now use mobile phones under flight mode, they are still not allowed to use these devices during takeoffs and landings, the CAA said. Other international carriers, including United Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, All Nippon Airways and Air New Zealand, also allow their passengers to use their mobile phones under flight mode.

Article 43 of the Civil Aviation Act (民用航空法) also bans passengers from using any device that may “interfere with navigation or telecommunications from the time the cabin door is shut and the cabin crew announces such prohibited use up to the time the said door is reopened.”

Violators may be subject to imprisonment not exceeding five years, detention or a fine of up to NT$150,000, the act says.

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