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What are the biggest myths about flying?

There are some strange myths out there about commercial 300000 something kg airplanes and the pilots that fly them.


Autopilot does not mean the pilot can sit back and relax until it reaches its destination. An aircraft is a very complex piece of machinery and the highly skilled pilots still need to be able to interpret the readings of the cockpit equipment making vital decisions depending on the readings.

Opening the cabin door while in flight.

Opening the cabin doors of a commercial airplane is something that only happens in movies. At 39000 feet above-ground the air pressure is so high opening the door while in flight is near impossible.

Oxygen masks empty

Another crazy myth doing the rounds is that the oxygen masks are empty. Truth is oxygen masks have enough air to allow you to breathe for 12 full minutes. In case of an emergency the pilot will immediately begin his descent to a safe altitude were breathing without oxygen masks is possible. 12-minutes leaves the pilot with ample time to do so.

Disposing human waste in the air

In the early days of commercial flying this was definitely the case. With every flush the toilet was emptied out of the plane mid-flight. In modern commercial airplanes waster flushed is emptied into a storage container which is disposed of when plane lands.

You get easily intoxicated at high altitude.

The percentage of alcohol in your blood cannot be altered by altitude neither can the potency of alcohol change mid flight.

Low cabin oxygen

It is widely believed that the oxygen in cabins on commercial flights are kept lower than normal. It is said that this is done to keep passengers drowsy and calm throughout the flight. This would be a major health risk to passengers, a risk no aircraft carrier would ever take.


Head over to Century Avionics for more facts about flying

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