A TRAVEL specialist has revealed the scary reason why passengers have to stow their hand luggage underneath the seat in front of them on planes.
It may seem like an unnecessarily over the top demand from the flight attendants that bags be tucked under the chairs, but leaving them out in the cabin could prove to be very dangerous.
Should the aircraft encounter any turbulence or worse, begin to plummet, the luggage could start to pose an extra threat to the safety of passengers on board.
Travel writers at Stuff NZ explained exactly how badly people could be affected by luggage that's improperly stored.
They said: "A lightweight handbag may not seem all that dangerous on its own, but when a plane is plummeting at high speeds, or hitting severe turbulence, it can easily turn into a missile.
"It can seriously harm you or a fellow passenger if you’re hit with a corner of hardware, a loose item or even a buckle or metal-studded strap."
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Should the bag be tossed through the cabin during some particularly severe turbulence, it could cause some serious damage to passengers who end up getting in its way.
It's not just luggage either that could suddenly become a dangerous object during a flight.
Sun Online Travel's resident flight attendant said people should keep shoes on at all times for the same reason.
They said: "The floor is gross and you should never be walking around without shoes on for that reason, but on top of that it's really dangerous.
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"If we hit some turbulence and your shoes are just out in the cabin, they could easily go flying through the plane and hit someone.
"The same with your luggage as well as yourself. If you're not strapped in, if your items are just loose throughout the plane, then it's going to become more of a risk if the plane's shaking around."
Several of the plane's seemingly arbitrary rules are in place for safety purposes and could make a huge difference in an emergency.
Another of those is stowing the tray tables for take off and landing.
Stuff revealed that 61 per cent of fatal accidents occurred on planes during those two moments, making them the riskiest part of flying.
Having the tables clipped to the back of the seat in front could be the difference between a passenger escaping from the cabin, or getting trapped.
They continued: "Should a need arise to evacuate the aircraft in an emergency while the plane is climbing or descending, the last thing you'll want is pesky obstructions."
Meanwhile, this is why you should never wear flip flops for a flight.
And these are three strict rules about feet on planes that every passenger should know.
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