Re: 747 question

From:         "Larry Stone, United Airlines, 415-634-4725" <STONE_L@Eisner.DECUS.Org>
Organization: Digital Equipment Computer Users Society
Date:         27 Mar 95 01:29:48 
References:   1 2
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>No. Prior to push back the doors are properly armed. There is no
>prompting from the flight deck for this; the cabin crew informs the
>capt. that this has been done and *then* he can push back.
>The "prepare for departure" and "prepare for arrival" are simply means
>of making sure the entire crew is seated and strapped in. has nothing
>to do with arming the slides.

I'll try to describe what my observtions (as a passenger) says we do at United.
Other airlines do things differently.

At departure, when the Customer Service Representative (CSR) closes the entry
door, the First Flight Attendant (FA) annouces "Prepare for departure" or
"prepare doors for departure" or even "Arm doors for departure." This is the
signal for the other FA's to arm the doors. Note that at this point, if the
jetway is returned and the door to be opened, a "Prepare for arrival"
announcement will be made by the First FA and the doors disarmed prior to
opening a door.

Prior to taking the runway for take-off, one of the flight deck crew announces,
"prepare for takeoff." This is the signal to the FA's to be seated.

About 5 minutes prior to landing, the flight deck crew announce "prepare for
landing." This is the signal for the FA's to prepare the cabin for arrival and
tehn be seated. This is also the signal to *you* to bring your seat back up,
stow your tray table, etc. Ever wonder why some passengers do it automatically
when that announcement is made and don't wait for the First FA's announcement
to do so? 

Finally, upon arrival once the seatbelt sign is off and the jetway or stairs at
the door, the First FA announces "prepare for arrival" (or "prepare doors for
arrival" or "disarm doors for arrival"). The FA then cracks the door (releases
the handle) to indicate to the CSR on the other side that the door is disarmed
and ready for opening. The CSR then opens the door the rest of the way (planes
with electric doors (DC-10, 767) are probably handled slightly differently).

Larry Stone                             | United Airlines
VAX Systems Administrator               | Maintenance Operations Center                | San Francisco, CA  415-634-4725