Attorney Betsey Herd Discusses Shrinking Airline Seats on Fox 13

Attorney Betsey Herd Discusses Shrinking Airline Seats on Fox 13

Attorney Betsey Herd Discusses Shrinking Airline Seats on Fox 13

Betsey Herd Talks with Laura Moody on How Shrinking Airline Seats Can Impact an Emergency

Among consumer complaints about airline seating, there is an issue with shrinking seat size and how it affects emergency access, especially in the tighter rows in economy class. A consumer group in Sarasota filed a petition with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to ask it to promulgate rules on the size of airplane seats, which have been steadily shrinking. The FAA declined to address this petition. The consumer group then appealed to an appellate court, which demanded that the FAA provide some rationale for refusing these rules. The FAA in turn refused to divulge what it referred to as “secret data” that informed its decision. In response, the judge ordered the FAA to come up with a rational basis for refusing to issue rules that would address seat size. The court discovered that, prior to this case, the FAA had in fact conducted a study on factors hindering movement in exit rows, and that study supports what this consumer group from Sarasota is arguing. After all, what happens if a passenger gets hurt or cannot get out of her or his seat during an emergency?

Originally Aired on Thursday, August 3, 2017 on Fox 13 News