Brace Position

The safety demonstration varies from airline to airline and so does the 'brace position'. This is the position you should adopt, should the aircraft have to make an emergency landing. In the UK, a new brace position was made law in 1994; that is to say that the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) required all British civil airlines to illustrate this position both on safety videos and cards.

If the aircraft is about to make an emergency landing, adopt the brace position, and stay there until the aircraft comes to a complete stop - there may be more than one jolt. The cabin crew should call you towards their doors, but if they don't, make your evacuation immediately if you believe it is a catastrophic (i.e. life-threatening) situation. However, even in an emergency, don't attempt to open aircraft doors while the aircraft is still moving or to evacuate until the engines have been shut down. This is highly dangerous and could result in the loss of life.

An example of all passengers adopting a brace position before impact occured, and surviving the subsequent crash happened in 1991 when an SAS MD-80 lost both engines shortly after take-off. The aircraft ended up in three pieces, yet the majority of passengers literally walked away from the crash. Only seven were seriously injured and their all adopting a brace position was cited as a significant factor in the survival of all on board.

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