The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) was ordered by a judge in 2017 to address the issue of airlines shrinking the sizes of seats and legroom in order to add more seating on planes. The FAA has responded by ruling that seat shrinkage does not affect passenger safety and so they will not be setting limits on legroom or seat width.
“The FAA has no evidence showing that current seat dimensions hamper the speed of passenger evacuation, or that increased passenger size creates an evacuation issue,” an FAA spokesman told MarketWatch. “During an evacuation, passengers stand up in just a few seconds, which is less time than it takes for emergency exits to begin functioning and for the line that begins forming in the aisle to clear.”
NBC’s Today show reported on July 10 that U.S. airlines are planning to reduce their restroom sizes by three inches in an effort to add yet another seat.