News

FAA changes rules; cell phones, tablets cleared for takeoff

FAA changes rules; cell phones, tablets cleared for takeoff

CLEARED FOR TAKEOFF: A United Airlines jet departs in view of the air traffic control tower at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The FAA has loosened rules allowing passengers to use electronic devices in flight. Photo: Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Government safety rules are changing to let airline passengers use most electronic devices from gate-to-gate.

The change will let passengers read, work, play games, watch movies and listen to music.

The Federal Aviation Administration says airlines can allow passengers to use the devices during takeoffs and landings on planes that meet certain criteria for protecting aircraft systems from electronic interference.

Most new airliners are expected to meet the criteria, but changes won’t happen immediately. Timing will depend upon the airline.

Connections to the Internet to surf, exchange emails, text or download data will still be prohibited below 10,000 feet.

Heavier devices like laptops will have to be stowed. Passengers will be told to switch their smartphones, tablets and other devices to airplane mode.

And cellphone calls will still be prohibited.

Recent Headlines

in National

Sears to close stores, lay off thousands of employees

sears

Sears will lay off at least 5,457 employees and close more than 100 stores, many before Christmas.

in Entertainment

‘Dukes of Hazard’ recording Christmas album

dukes

Good ol' boys John Schneider and Tom Wopat have teamed up to record a new holiday album.

in Entertainment

Hilary Swank, Miranda Lambert to front ‘Dog-a-Thon’

swank

LeAnn Rimes, Betty White, Scarlett Johansson, Josh Duhamel, and Kesha are among those set to appear on a "Dog-a-Thon."

in Sports

Thursday’s Sports Minute

sanfran

A look at the big sports stories you'll be talking about today, Thursday, Oct. 23.

in National, World

U.S.-led air strikes kill hundreds of militants

airstrikes

Air strikes by U.S.-led forces have killed 521 Islamist fighters and 32 civilians during a month-long campaign in Syria.