SCHUMER: AIRLINE AMENDMENT TO ALLOW MORE LEGROOM & EXPAND SEAT SIZE DEFEATED; SCHUMER VOWS TO KEEP TRYING TO RETURN LOST INCHES TO TRAVELERS
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today reacted to Congress’ inability to pass legislation to establish minimum seat size standards for airplanes.
“When talking to travelers, the number one compliant I hear is shrinking legroom and cramped seats – unfortunately that’s a message most republicans in Congress chose to ignore. Airlines have been cramming consumers into airplanes like sardines and instead of lowering their prices several major airlines went the other direction – they started charging for the extra inches in legroom that was once considered standard. At a time when the airlines are making record profits, a minimum seat standard is necessary to protect consumer health, safety and comfort and I will continue to fight for this in Congress.” –U.S. Senator Charles Schumer-
Schumer authored and pushed for the legislation that would have:
· Required FAA to establish a moratorium on airlines further reducing the size of their seats, ensuring that an airline’s current seat size is maintained as the “floor”
· Directed the FAA, in consultation with experts, to set a minimum standard seat size and pitch for commercial flights
· Increased transparency by requiring airlines to post their seat dimensions on their websites, providing a commercial incentive for airlines to offer more comfortable seating arrangements.
Despite record airline profits, Schumer noted that, over the past number of years the amount of legroom and seat width onboard airplanes has significantly shrunk, making air travel uncomfortable for many passengers. Schumer said that this legislation should have passed but noted that airline industry lobbyists were a strong group in opposition. Schumer said he would continue to fight for this legislation.
The vote failed 42 to 54.