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IPFS News Link • Transportation: Air Travel

Airline seats have been getting smaller for years. Is the shrinking coming to an end?

•, Hugo Martín

The result has been frustration and pushback from passengers who now endure narrower airline seats with less legroom.

But relief may be in sight: After years of delays, federal regulators have begun taking public comments on a proposal to impose minimum standards on airline seat width and legroom to put a halt to the many years of seat shrinkage.

The standards are needed, say passenger rights advocates, to ensure that passengers are not in agony during long flights and are able to escape a plane quickly in the case of an emergency. Airlines are opposed to any standards, saying studies have shown that seat sizes don't affect how fast passengers get out of an airplane in a catastrophe.