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Restrictions on use of personal electronic devices have been relaxed this year with passengers being able to use devices like e-readers from gate-to-gate. While that has already happened there has been much debate about allowing folks on passenger jets to make and receive phone calls during flight. The U.S. government is nearing the final set of rules and so far it looks like the proposed rules would put an end to in-flight calls in the U.S.

In a speech last week at the International Aviation Club in Washington the Department of Transportation’s general counsel Kathryn Thomson said that the next step could result in a formal ban on in-flight calls in the U.S. This was reiterated by a spokeswoman for the DOT who confirmed that the department is developing a “notice of proposed rulemaking” which will be published in December.

The notice will contain DOT’s objections against people using their cellphones in-flight to make and receive calls. The issue would then be opened up to comments by the industry. A final ruling is expected by February 2015.

Mobile data use and texting is already allowed on flights. Regulators are focusing on disruptive effects of allowing people to make voice calls and believe that many passengers and even the flight crew are against phone use in-flight.

Would you prefer to have the ability to make calls from 35,000 feet in the air or would you rather not have to bear a flight next to someone yapping away on their cellphone. Comes down to personal choice really as one could argue for both sides.

Filed in Transportation.. Source: online.wsj

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