Re: exit door latch

From:         Tony Blades <tonyB@seavixen.demon.co.uk>
Organization: None
Date:         05 Sep 95 01:59:58 
References:   1
Followups:    1
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In article: <airliners.1995.1338@ohare.Chicago.COM>  Ken Shainker <msmopr01.kshain01@eds.com>
writes:
> This past week I was flying on an unnamed airline in a 727-200.  I was
> sitting in an exit row and noticed before takeoff that the emergency exit
> door latch was partially open.  I told the flight attendent and she
> pushed it closed and didn't seem to worried about it.  Should she have
> been worried about it? (I know it concerned me!)  Also, what keeps some
> unstable person on an exit row from pulling it open because they want
> some fresh air?  Do these doors lock when the pilot announces something
> like 'check doors and cross check'?

What you saw was most likely the handle cover hanging down a little, but
if it was the handle, by moving it back to the fully stowed position the
flight attendant ensured that the hatch was securely closed.

There are no locks on any doors or hatches, the only thing that prevents
someone opening a hatch in flight is cabin pressure.  A 2' x 4' overwing
exit hatch has around 8 lbs/sq in holding it closed, and that translates
to over 4 tons!  I don't know of anyone strong enough to move that sort
of weight.  Once the aircraft is depressurised after it leaves the runway
after landing, the hatch could then be opened as the pressure on either
side has been equalised.

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