I strongly disagree with Michael Smerconish that adding video cameras in aircraft cockpits will provide more data than black boxes ("Flights need 21st century technology in cockpit," Sunday).
I also disagree with his assertion that the video from the cameras can be streamed to airline home bases in real time. Simply because it is possible to stream video over cell phones does not mean it can be done with fast-moving airplanes without ticket prices going through the roof.
The flight data recorder of modern aircraft like the Airbus A330 already records aircraft speed, engine speed, position of control surfaces, and many other critical parameters.
In addition, the cockpit voice recorder provides the conversations of the pilots. While video may show the movements of the pilots, it will not provide any more aircraft performance parameters needed for accident investigations.
If Smerconish wants to improve aircraft safety, he should write to his congressman and demand faster implementation of GPS tracking of aircraft.
If this technology were in place, we would now know the location of Air France Flight 447, and would be working on locating the flight recorders.