OTTAWA May 26 Canada, following the lead of the
United States and the European Union, on Monday relaxed official
restrictions on using mobile devices in flight while maintaining
a ban on transmitting information.
Transport Minister Lisa Raitt said air passengers could now
use smartphones, cameras, electronic games, tablets and
computers throughout a flight. Under current Canadian rules, all
such devices must be shut down during take off and landing.
Passengers, however, will only be able to enjoy the new
freedom if the airline they are flying on updates their safety
manuals and can guarantee that during take off and landings all
passengers are able to follow crew instructions.
"We wouldn't have approved this if we were concerned that it
would affect either the safety of air travelers or of crews,"
Raitt told a news conference.
She also said the ban on sending or receiving e-mails and
phone calls in flight would remain in place.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration announced similar
measures for users of personal electronic devices last October.
The European Union followed suit in December.
(Reporting by David Ljunggren, editing by G Crosse)