Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Tragedy has struck again for Malaysia Airlines, only months after their last passenger plane went missing. In light of the 295 passengers who were plucked from the sky at the hands of Ukrainian opposition forces, the airline is taking a page from the U.S. Military’s safety playbook. As of August 1st, 2014, all passengers aboard Malaysia Airlines will be required to wear a reflective belt, sometimes known as a “PT Belt”, while in flight.
The leaked internal memo specifies that all passengers must be uniform in the wear of their reflective belt; everyone will either have it around their waist, or across their shoulders. According to one Malaysian Airline executive, “The studies from the U.S. are clear. Ever since the military’s implementation of the reflective belt at home station as well as war zones, less people were killed or injured from enemy fire, motorcycle accidents, running on the road in huge formations, and suicide. We can only assume that the reflective belt will have the same effect on our airlines.”
Some have questioned the new policy; citing reasonable concerns that missiles don’t distinguish between reflective belts, as well as the fact that it will make everyone who wears them look silly and unprofessional. Even in the face of those arguments, airline officials stand firm, “Had we had a reflective belt on the lost airliner, rescue teams would have been able to find it in the ocean and possibly save lives. Had we put a reflective belt on the passengers flying over Ukraine, the anti-aircraft missile would have self destructed before reaching the jet. These are undisputable facts.”
Is there a more nefarious reason behind the implementation of the reflective belt though? Some analysts are saying that those who suggested this change in the safety regulation know that it won’t make a difference, but now they can say that they “did something”, which will reflect well on their next evaluation reports, and possibly their next promotion. Rumors are already starting to float around their corporate headquarters about mandating annual online training for all passengers as well, which will only amplify the effectiveness of the reflective belt.