Air travelers will now be allowed to use mobile phones once the aircraft lands and clears the active runway.
DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) has amended aircraft rules to allow the use of mobile phones by passengers once the aircraft clears the active runway except in cases when low visibility conditions exist at the airport.
So far, the use of mobiles was allowed only after the aircraft came to a complete halt and boarding gates opened. This was done to ensure that mobile signals do not disturb the communication between the cockpit and the air traffic control. The aviation safety regulator said it had amended Rule 29B of Aircraft Rules.
For the compliance of the amended rule, DGCA said the "Pilot-In-Command (PIC), having cleared the active runway after landing with no other runway/ intersections to cross, in visual flight conditions and when the PIC is comfortable, will intimate the cabin crew incharge on the intercom to make the announcement for the passengers for the use of the cellular phone."
The cabin crew incharge will make the announcement informing passengers that the use of mobiles after landing is allowed. "Aircraft has left the active runway and slowed down. Passengers may use their mobile phones now," will be announced.
The new procedure has to be adopted by airlines before October 22.