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Lights in the airplane: That's why they go out during takeoff and landing

Precautions for better visibility in an emergency

Germany is in the mood for travel: airlines are reporting record bookings and summer vacation is just around the corner. Many passengers find the moment before an airplane takes off particularly exciting: the plane slowly rolls into takeoff position, the pilot soon accelerates, and then the plane points its nose skyward. Added to this is an effect that only seems theatrical: the lights go out – in the cabin, the galley and the cockpit.
What seems theatrical has a serious background: in the dark, the pilot can see better. However, the safety precaution is just as important for crew and passengers. If a critical situation arises during takeoff or landing, everyone is quicker to take the appropriate action when the lights are off. What's more, light sources that aren't switched on can't fail – which could cause panic among passengers at delicate moments, as they find it difficult to get their bearings. This way, their eyes have already become accustomed to the darkness and glare is avoided. As soon as the plane is in the air or safely on the tarmac after landing, all the lights come back on, explains the German passenger portal EUflight.
Raised window shades
For a similar reason, window shades should also be raised. If the power fails in an emergency, daylight can still shine through the windows. In an emergency, rescue workers must also be able to look into the cabin in order to initiate targeted assistance. The German daily newspaper Merkur points this out.