Lose weight or be seated apart, The European Aviation Safety Agency study on ways to improve air travel for special category passengers suggests.
The European Aviation Safety Agency recently published a Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) addressing safe carriage of Special Categories of Passengers (SCPs).
The study addresses concerns of European disability groups and the European Commission about inconsistent requirements and different policies across Europe, creating a barrier to air travel.
Changes in procedures are based on a scientific study on the carriage of SCPs conducted by TÜV Rheinland for EASA. The comprehensive study includes updated scientific data and a methodological risk assessment of safety risks that could be associated with the carriage of passengers on stretchers, children, infants, obese passengers, and passengers with sensory and mobility limitations.
Based on the study's findings, EASA proposes guidance on seating allocation of specific categories of passengers with special needs to ensure that they are distributed evenly throughout the cabin and that they are surrounded by the maximum number of passengers capable of assisting in case of an emergency.
The European Aviation Safety Agency proposal also recommends that seating in the same row in the case of obese passengers should be avoided to ensure that the seat structure can better resist the additional strain.
EASA public consultation on the Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) is now open. The deadline for submission of comments is 8 April 2014.