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Cabin Safety and role of cabin Crew - An overview - Angels Of The Sky – Flight Attendants of ‘Cactus 1549’ – Miracle on the Hudson

Safety and security on board: Cabin Crew on the front line – By Ahmed Haouaria 

09 Jan 2020

Cabin Safety and role, of  cabin Crew 

An overview 

Cabin safety contributes to the prevention of accidents and incidents, to the protection of the occupants of the aircraft through proactive safety management, in particular the detection of dangers and the management of safety risks, as well as '' strengthening emergency survival capacity. Cabin safety is based on regulations governing cabin operational activities, operator procedures and documents, training and skills of cabin crew (including use of facilities and devices), aircraft design and construction, on-board equipment and the operating environment.

ICAO defines a cabin crew member as being a crew member responsible for carrying out the tasks assigned to him by the operator or the pilot-in-command, in the interest of the safety of passengers, but which exclude the duties of a flight crew member (pilots). Typically, the role of cabin crew members is primarily focused on the evacuation of the aircraft in the event of an accident. However, cabin crew members also play an important proactive role in safety management, which can help prevent accidents. This role includes, but is not limited to, the following functions:

a) prevent escalation of incidents in the cabin, such as the presence of smoke or fire;

b) inform the flight crew of abnormal situations in the cabin or affecting the aircraft, such as pressurization problems, engine anomalies and contamination of critical surfaces;

c) prevent unlawful interference and manage incidents from passengers which may compromise flight safety and security, such as hijackings.

Cabin crew members play a key role in the detection of hazards and the reporting of any conditions that may pose a risk to the operation of an aircraft and endanger the safety of its occupants.

Continuous training, strict procedures appliance, emergency gestures constantly repeated, systematic safety briefing prior to each flight: the friendly Cabin Crew who offers you a drink, a meal or whoever sells you the chocolate bar is also and above all the your on board safety guarantor

At the start of this new decade I felt that it would be effective to remember that whatever the function of a crew member, pilot, or cabin crew, it is first and above all an airline professional ensuring the passenger’s safety.

If a certain "glamor" side tends to overshadow this fundamental role, remember that the contribution of cabin crew to the lives saved in an accident is certainly not anecdotal.To pay tribute to them, let’s shed some light on events that have taken place in recent years.

Angels Of The Sky – Flight Attendants of ‘Cactus 1549’ – The Miracle on the Hudson

New York January 15, 2009, US Air flight 1549 takes off from Guardia Airport bound for Charlotte.This is a routine flight, operated by an Airbus A 320. One flight among thousands of others today, departing from New York airports ...But we all remember the incredible scenario that occurs while the plane is climbing, very exactly over the Bronx: a flight of geese crosses the path of the Airbus and is sucked in by its two falling engines broken down simultaneously!

The reassuring and essential role of hostesses

Back to La Guardia too risky, alternate airport too far, only the Hudson River can be considered!Ditching as perfect as possible, plane in the water, full throttle boats to the crash, helicopters, survivors with blankets on their shoulders, NYPD, cameras, breaking news, America and the world saw the waves of the Hudson a new hero: Captain Chesley Sullenberger.It was he, the former naval pilot, who undoubtedly saved the lives of 146 passengers, thanks to his composure and extraordinary professionalism.His name, which has gone around the world, is definitely associated with this feat ...But when the 146 passengers found themselves unharmed but trapped in an airplane whose vocation is to fly and not necessarily to float, the cabin crew all, hostesses were able to get everyone out quickly with assertiveness, energy and composure.They were able to identify which doors to open and especially which not to open, taking into consideration the level of water to direct the passengers, to control the panic, to help the passengers wear with their life jackets. Well done girls ... they were only three and they managed to, safely, put every passengers out! Angels Of The Sky – Flight Attendants of ‘Cactus 1549’Donna Dent, Doreen Welsh and Sheila Dail were real heroes.

Miracles do not happen all the time

Another accident, and here too, hostesses and stewards whose excellent work must be remembered, those of Air France Flight AF 358 of August 2, 2005.On this day, the Airbus A 340 encountered a landing problem, left the runway finished its run in a ravine and caught fire immediately.The plane will be completely destroyed, but no deaths have been reported among the 297 passengers.We talked about miracle but it is rather the know-how and the qualification of the cabin crew that we must evoke.Cabin chiefs, hostesses and stewards had to face a particularly difficult situation: fire, smoke, panic, some unusable exits.The investigation report by the Canadian authorities highlights the excellent work of the Cabin Crew Members who had the passengers evacuated in less than 3 minutes!Do not think that a flight attendant, strapped to his seat during the landing phase, is already thinking about room service or the hotel swimming pool.

During this final phase of the flight, it is time for him to do what is called the silent check list, that is to say, remember the emergency procedures:

  • Opening of emergency exits
  • Implementation of evacuation devices , slides
  • Orders to shout to passengers
  • Safety equipment available… in case of need

The in-flight explosion did not take place ...

Mastering Security is key. But Security is also a major Flight Attendant constant concern. The Cabin With this regard Cabin Crew watches and acts effectively.Remember the American Airlines flight Paris - Miami on December 22, 2001.On board, a terrorist with a booby-trapped shoe turns it into a bomb.Hemis Moutardier and Cristina Jones, Cabin Manager and flight attendant, as experienced professionals noticed this strangely behavior passenger, refusing contact and not wanting to be disturbed.While managing the course of the flight they keep an eye on him at all times.Above the Atlantic, the man will take action and grab his shoe to light the wick ... in a few seconds they are on him and question him "What are you doing?" in response, they grabbed him by the shoulder, he tries to free himself, the matches fall.The two women understand, they throw themselves on him, the passengers get involved to finally control the terrorist.The in-flight explosion of the American Airlines Boeing 767 with 205 people on board did not take place thanks to the professionalism of a cabin crew.


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