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ASSOCIATION OF FLIGHT ATTENDANTS TELLS FLIERS HOW TO REDUCE RISK IN AN ACCIDENT

ASSOCIATION OF FLIGHT ATTENDANTS TELLS FLIERS HOW TO REDUCE RISK
 IN AN ACCIDENT
 WASHINGTON, March 25 /PRNewswire/ -- The Association of Flight Attendants (AFA), AFL-CIO, in reviewing recent airline accidents and incidents, has made a list of recommendations to airline passengers on how to increase their chances of surviving a crash or other aircraft incident.
 "Most accidents occur on takeoff and landing and are survivable if passengers are informed and prepared to exit quickly," stated Dee Maki, AFA national president. "To ensure their safety in the air, it is important for passengers to listen to the flight attendant and follow the instructions on the briefing card."
 -- Listen to the Flight Attendant Safety Briefing. Airplanes and their exit procedures vary; therefore, this important aspect of the announcement is different on each aircraft. Using the oxygen masks properly when travelling with youngsters is vital since you, as the adult, must cover your nose and mouth first in a decompression, even though instinct may suggest doing the opposite.
 -- Make a Mental Map of the Cabin. Always locate the two pairs of exits nearest you because the closest one could be blocked, and develop an escape plan. Because smoke can hinder your vision in an accident, memorize the number of seats between you and the exit.
 -- Stay Low in an Evacuation. In a post-crash fire, temperatures and gases can be incapacitating at head level, so stay low enough to navigate your way to an exit. Staying too low, or crawling, could allow scrambling passengers to injure you.
 -- Wear Less Flammable Materials and Low-Heeled Shoes. Covering your entire body with materials that will not burn quickly can help. Some synthetic fibers, such as stockings, tend to melt on the body in a fire.
 -- Stay Alert and Sober. It is important to be alert, especially during takeoff and landing. You have approximately 90 seconds to evacuate a burning aircraft. The quicker your mind, the easier it will be to escape.
 While it is important for passengers to stay alert during flight, it is a necessity for flight attendants whose duties require them to prepare both the aircraft and passengers for an emergency landing, assist passengers with oxygen masks, deploy emergency equipment and evacuate the plane. Flight attendants' alertness is not guaranteed, however; because there are no limits on the amount of time they work without rest. It is possible for a flight attendant to have been on duty for 24 hours in a row and have to respond to an emergency. In an aircraft emergency, the lives of many are dependent in part on decisions made by the flight attendant. Duty time legislation is pending in Congress, requesting the FAA to impose the same duty and rest requirements protecting controllers, pilots and dispatchers for flight attendants.
 "The flight attendant could be your most important resource in an emergency," Maki stated. "Working together, flight attendants and passengers can prevent the emergency from becoming a tragedy."
 The Association of Flight Attendants, AFL-CIO, represents 32,000 flight attendants on 20 airlines and is the largest flight attendant union in the world.
 -0- 3/25/92
 /CONTACT: David Melancon of the Association of Flight Attendants, 202-328-5400/ CO: Association of Flight Attendants ST: District of Columbia IN: AIR SU:


TW-MK -- DC021 -- 1542 03/25/92 13:25 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 25, 1992
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