Illustration: Simon Bosch.

Illustration: Simon Bosch.

WHY DO I NEED TO TURN MY PHONE OFF WHEN I FLY?

Mobile phones and other electronic devices have the capacity to interfere with an aircraft's electronic and navigation systems.

Most aircraft usefly-by-wire electronics to maintain control and stability, and the outcome of a device such as a mobile phone jamming those electronics or interfering with the navigation systems is potentially catastrophic.

Aircraft with older avionics are more susceptible to radio-frequency interference. While there is no evidence to prove an aircraft has ever been brought undone by mobile phone signals, the possibility exists. Critics of the ban argue there are always a few transgressors, but the mantra is better safe than sorry.

Besides, do you really want to listen to the next-seat person shouting, "I'll be at the terminal in 30 minutes, can you pick me up?"

Send your conundrum to tripologist@fairfaxmedia.com.au