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Hand luggage: Never do this with cabin baggage warns expert – it could be very dangerous

Hand luggage for flights is something nearly everyone takes onboard a plane. There are all manner of dos and don’ts when it comes to flying. However, there is one huge no-no when it comes to cabin luggage, an expert has said.

Author Christopher Bartlett revealed in his 2016 book Plane Clever what passengers should never do.

He explained that in the event of an emergency evacuation, fliers should never take their hand luggage with them.

“Leave luggage behind!” Bartlett wrote in his book.

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“In the actor’s view, and that of many experts, the authorities should take a much stronger view against passengers ignoring instructions and bringing bags – and even wheelie cases – with them down the chutes in emergency evacuations.

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“Doing so, they are putting other passengers and themselves at risk.”

When a plane crashed in Russia in May last year, passengers were harshly criticised for trying to bring their baggage with them when escaping the aircraft.

Up to 41 people died when the plane made an emergency landing at Moscow’s main international airport on 5 May 2019, with those lucky enough to have lived blasting the actions of passengers who delayed others getting off so they could get their luggage off.

Video footage was captured showing passengers escaping with their bags as the stricken Sukhoi Superjet landed at Sheremetyevo airport while on fire in horrific footage.


One social media user said: “We don’t yet know for sure but protocol and decency commands you to get your a$ $ off the plane without taking your suitcase from an overhead bin.”

If travellers are particularly concerned about taking items with them, there are tips to follow.

“Flying is extremely safe and emergency evacuations are rare, but there can be instances where – mostly as a precaution in case the aircraft catches fire, an emergency evacuation is ordered,” said Bartlett.

“Having essential items, such as prescription medication and so on and even your passport in a  pocket or tiny pouch you can grab should there be an emergency is a great idea. Women’s handbags might be too large.”

The author continued: “Deciding what is essential is not easy, but with some forethought you can radically cut down on what you need to bring with you in an emergency evacuation.

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“If you have material on your computers, you should anyway have copied the essential parts to a safe place in case your house burns down.

“While travelling, you should save the material you are working on to a memory stick, which you can slip into a pocket and bring with you down the slide.”

Pilot Patrick Smith revealed what the reality of what escaping down the inflatable slide is really like in his book Cockpit Confidential.


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