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Modern aviation travelers have grown accustomed to the idea that the airline seat would one day shrink to nothing, but according to some promising news, a couple of legislators will once again head into the fray to stave off the shrinking seat.
Via press release, Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN) and Congressman Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) announced Monday they would again introduce the Seat Egress in Air Travel (SEAT) Act into congress, highlighting a commitment to address a concerning trend in the airline industry.
The bill-planned for introduction early next year-would put a universal code on seat sizes.
It's not just your imagination. According to the release, seats have indeed shrunk and closed in one another since 1970.
Rather than kowtow to the industry's creativity and ability to find new and increasingly insane ways to cram more seats into the cabin, the bill would essentially force airlines to manufacture seats with a minimum size and place them at a minimum distance to allow for ample legroom.
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Via the release, Congressman Cohen - someone with the knowledge that comes with serving on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Aviation - explained: "As millions of Americans take to the skies this week for the holiday season, it is a reminder of our obligation to ensure air travel is safe for passengers."
Yet, it's just not your comfort that Cohen is worried about, but also your safety.
Because, while it's nice to think that legislation would be enacted simply to guarantee you could kick up your feet and fly in actual comfort rather than like a sardine, this issue is far more serious than that. The congressman continues with why SEAT is so important:
"The time to examine the safety implications of smaller airplane seats is now, not after some future tragedy. Planes need to be capable of rapid evacuation in case of emergency, yet appropriate testing has not been conducted by the FAA on all of today's smaller seats."
Congressman Kinzinger echoed the sentiment: "This time of year is a busy time of travel for people in Illinois and across the country, and it is critical that safety is our top priority."
From the consumer's standpoint, smaller seats jammed closer together nearly mandates sitting in one confined space that may actually pose an issue if an exorbitant number of travelers have to get off the plane in a hurry.
Another worry, according to Cohen, is the deep vein thrombosis or other issues that may arise from sitting in one place for too long.
A political landscape currently mired in polarizing stratification sees a joint effort in this case.
Kinzinger continues: "I'm grateful to join my colleague, Rep. Cohen, in announcing our plans to introduce the Safe Egress in Air Travel (SEAT) Act in the 115th Congress. This legislation is important to ensure our aircraft's seats are of a big enough size to guarantee effective passageways of evacuation for passenger safety. I am proud to support this important measure and look forward to working with my colleagues to get this bill signed into law."
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