Tuesday, December 20, 2005

More on EU rules

Apparently the EU's new laws regarding discriminating against the disabled for air travel include a clause addressing the manufacturers of aircraft. Flightinternational.com reports "... a clause was added to the bill urging carriers to 'take into account the needs of disabled persons and persons with reduced mobility when deciding the design of new and newly refurbished aircraft.'" Manufacturers will be urged "to consider new configurations, such as several rows of quick-change removable seats, in new and retrofit cabin designs." Think about that! Surely you've seen what has been done with flexibility in minivan and SUV seating over the last few years. Why not with aircraft as well? Have someone who needs to ride in their wheelchair? Flip a couple of seats, lock them down and you're ready to fly. A possible problem with this is that the clause aimed at manufacturers is voluntary. But Scope -- and hopefully other adviocacy groups -- are poised to push for mandatory measures if jet makers don't comply.