The FAA should revisit its in-flight restrictions on the use of e-book readers and other portable electronic devices during take-off and landing.
Passenger safety must be paramount, but policymakers should also make sure that regulations such as these are justified. It is time for clearer standards and more scientific investigation to determine acceptable levels of electromagnetic emissions for portable electronic devices on aircraft and the impact of these devices on aircraft navigation and communication systems. Once an acceptable level of emissions is found, the FAA should encourage a voluntary certification for electronic device manufacturers so that passengers can use these approved devices. And rather than leaving it to individual airlines to investigate each device on their own, FAA should set some clear standards about what types of electronic devices are safe to operate during critical phases of the flight such as takeoff and landing, as well as those only safe to operate at cruising altitudes.