[Ed. – Surprisingly, this is not about COVID-19, as everything else seems to be. It’s supposedly about Americans getting fatter, although it seems unlikely Americans are so much fatter than we were six months ago that it’s suddenly necessary to weigh us individually rather than estimate weight, which has been the practice for decades. Just think: if we only had vaccine passports, perhaps inserted in our foreheads on microchips, a sensor network could probably spare everyone time and effort by auto-detecting such information.]
U.S. airlines may need to start weighing passengers in order to comply with FAA rules. For safety reasons, carriers need to calculate an aircraft’s weight and balance, and it has to be within allowable limits for the plane. However the assumptions they’ve been using for passengers are outdated. Americans are getting fatter, and the federal government wants airlines to find out how much fatter their passengers have gotten, at least for smaller aircraft.
Airlines can use standard weights published by the CDC for larger aircraft, with variance for winter and summer based on greater weight assumptions for clothing in the winter. However they outline a method for smaller aircraft to determine “[a]ctual passenger and bag weights” and to determine whether aircraft up to 70 seats should be considered small or large for this exercise.