Beijing police detained a passenger for allegedly making several calls on her mobile phone during an Air China flight, the Beijing Times reported Tuesday.
The woman, surnamed Yu, was held for five days after being arrested when her flight from Changchun, Jilin province, landed at Beijing International Airport on Dec. 28, the report said.
She had ignored attempts by other passengers and flight attendants to dissuade her from making the calls.
A flight attendant alerted police after the woman refused to turn off her phone, as in-flight rules require.
Yu allegedly complained that the flight attendants were “making a big deal out of it”.
The woman told police she had often made calls during flights and had never been stopped, leading her to think that doing so was acceptable. She admitted she had made a mistake.
A veteran Air China pilot said that in his own experience, mobile-phone signals do affect an aircraft’s electronics and could threaten flight safety, especially under unfavorable weather conditions.
China’s civil air safety regulations say passengers who use mobile phones or laptop computers that pose a threat to an aircraft’s navigation during a flight can be fined as much as 2,000 yuan (US$321.73) and be detained for up to five days.
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