November 22nd, 2013
08:04 AM ET

FCC to Consider Allowing Cell Phone Calls In-Flight

Making a cell phone call while aloft could become a reality under a proposal by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission.

Cell phone calls, texting and other mobile services would be allowed when the aircraft are flying above 10,000 feet, but not during takeoff and landing, according to an official briefed on the proposal.

Airlines would have to equip planes with special antennas approved by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration before passengers could start talking.

The commission says this proposal aims to give airline passengers the same communication access in the air that they have on trains and buses or in coffee shops.

The host of "Techbytes," Brett Larson, comments that he would prefer sitting next to a screaming child with an ear infection than a chatty Kathy on the phone for hours.

“Surprisingly, there's been a backlash already in the less than 12 hours that it's been since they said this,” Larson says, starting from a petition on the White House to the Flight Attendants Union and business people who have expressed opposition.

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November 20th, 2013
10:30 AM ET

2 Missing After Medical Flight Crashes off Florida Coast

Rescue workers scoured coastal Florida waters early Wednesday for two people missing after a Mexico-based air ambulance crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off Fort Lauderdale after an apparent engine failure.

Authorities found the bodies of two crew members just off the coast, Coast Guard Petty Officer Mark Barney said. Rescuers were searching a 20-square-mile area of the ocean for the other two, the Coast Guard said.

"The Coast Guard says it will continue to search throughout this afternoon, then reevaluate the system," CNN's John Zarrella reports.

The four people aboard the Learjet 35 - two pilots, a doctor and a nurse - had just dropped off a patient at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and were headed back to Cozumel, Mexico, when the crash occurred Tuesday evening, airport spokesman Greg Meyer said.

A distress call from one of the pilots came just moments after takeoff.

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