(CNN) — The US Federal Aviation Administration is seeking public comment on the size of commercial airliner seats – from a safety perspective.
“The FAA invites public comment to help the agency determine what minimum dimensions (including pitch, width, and length) of passenger seats may be necessary for safety, including primarily the evacuation of an airplane,” the request states.
In a statement to CNN, the FAA outlined additional safety considerations.
“FAA regulations require all transport category airplanes to be capable of rapid evacuation in the event of a fire. Other FAA evacuation requirements relate to actual conditions, landing gear collapse, and exit failure, among others.”
Comments are welcome until November 1.
What is not worth commenting on
The feedback sought by the agency is limited to safety concerns.
The FAA’s statement said questions such as “how passenger seat dimensions may relate to passenger comfort or convenience” are not included in its request for comments.
The report was prepared in accordance with the directive included in the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Act.
Several agencies and industry representatives, including the National Transportation Safety Board, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency and pilots and flight attendant associations, participated in the review of airplane evacuations over the past decade.
The panel made 27 recommendations to the FAA on ways to improve the safety of such evacuations, such as reviewing emergency lighting systems to determine whether higher lighting levels are needed.
Additionally, in connection with the FAA Reauthorization Act, the agency in 2019 and 2020 performed a simulated emergency evacuation. “In these tests, the size and spacing of the seats did not adversely affect the success of emergency evacuation,” according to the letter filed with the March. FAA report. agency administrator Steve Dickson.
The FAA noted that their simulations involved able-bodied adults under the age of 60, following accepted standards for human testing.
The call for comments provides the public with an opportunity to provide input on safety seat dimensions for children, passengers over age 60 and those with disabilities, the agency said in a letter to Congress.
In its notice seeking comments, the FAA noted that it is particularly interested in technical data and information.
Top Image: Airplane Seats (Adobe Stock)
CNN’s Marnie Hunter contributed to this report.