…it is. But so is flying and texting, which has become a worry for the NTSB, and is implicated in a helicopter crash, according to Quartz:
The survivor of a helicopter crash in Florida says his flight instructor was using his iPhone before the aircraft crashed into the ground, killing the instructor.
Safety regulators in the US and Europe worry that pilots are increasingly distracted by electronic devices. If the allegation in Florida proves true, it would be the latest evidence that phones and flying don’t mix well.
This is not the first time digital distraction may have been responsible for an accident. In May 2014 in Colorado, a single-engine Cessna crashed soon after takeoff, killing the pilot and his passenger. The National Traffic Safety Board recovered a GoPro camera and cell phone that showed that the pilot and passenger were taking selfies during takeoff; the camera flash disoriented the pilot, who stalled the plane. The NTSB concluded:
The GoPro recordings revealed that the pilot and various passengers were taking self-photographs with their cell phones and, during the night flight, using the camera’s flash function during the takeoff roll, initial climb, and flight in the traffic pattern. … Based on the evidence of cell phone use during low-altitude maneuvering, including the flight immediately before the accident flight, it is likely that cell phone use during the accident flight distracted the pilot and contributed to the development of spatial disorientation and subsequent loss of control.