FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
AT 30,000 FEET, WAITING IN LINE FOR THE BATHROOM STINKS
SeatGuru Calls for Regulation — Says Airlines Getting Away with Bladder Abuse
BOSTON, September 3, 2009 — There are laws for the number of bathrooms per person in restaurants, music venues, and the workplace, but none for aircraft. SeatGuru®, the web's most comprehensive resource for airline information, today called for new airline bathroom regulations. Founder Matt Daimler says, "Airlines with too few bathrooms per passenger create frustrating lines that are a real safety concern." He notes that while some aircraft have no bathrooms, like the Beech 1900 — operated by Continental and US Airways — there is still a need for additional lavatories.
SeatGuru calls for:
- An increase in the number of bathrooms onboard. US Airways 757-200 seats 164 people in the economy cabin and offers two toilets, or, a ratio of 82 passengers per toilet, while the Spirit Airbus A319 seats 144 passengers and has two toilets, or, a ratio of 72 passengers per toilet.
- Federally mandated passenger-to-toilet ratio. There are currently no government regulations dictating the number of toilets per passenger, but the U.S. Air Carrier Access Act of 1986 stipulates that aircraft with more than one aisle in which lavatories are provided shall include at least one accessible lavatory. There are no requirements for bathrooms on commercial carriers that have just one aisle. SeatGuru recommends a 50 passsenger-to-1 toilet ratio minimum.
- Accessible lavatories for wheelchair-bound passengers. Under the Air Carrier Access Act, an airline must provide an onboard wheelchair for passenger use on carriers that hold 60 or more passengers, yet most onboard lavatories are too small to accommodate a wheelchair-bound traveler.
- Mandatory bathroom checks prior to take off. Under current U.S. federal regulations, there are no requirements stipulating that toilets need to be operational prior to takeoff. A check of the toilets is at the discretion of the pilot. One SeatGuru frequent flyer recently commented that, on an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Heathrow, "The toilets stopped functioning halfway into the flight...we sat with our legs crossed — but it was horrific as you had so many people needing to go...people were crying."
Holding It In — Not Fun
Daimler adds, "A short 45-minute flight can easily become three hours or more on the plane due to delays, and not providing access to functional bathrooms is unacceptable. The airlines have already stripped away so many other amenities that we thought were givens — let's make sure that we get some regulations for those who go regularly."
SeatGuru (www.seatguru.com) is the web's most comprehensive resource for airline information, featuring 20,000+ flyer reviews on airline seats, services, and amenities, and helpful information and links about baggage and TSA regulations. SeatGuru offers more than 650 airline seat maps covering 90+ airlines to help travelers find the best seats before they fly. SeatGuru is part of the TripAdvisor Media Network.
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