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    Dumb Question About Flying

    Why don't the airlines have it so you can sit in your own chair when flying? I mean if you're going to crash .. there will hardly be any survivors anyway. What's the difference between being strapped down in a plane and being strapped down in a vehicle and wearing a seatbelt. I understand there would be turbulence .. but .. I'd be more worried of what's falling out of the overhead bins. I'm just curious why the airlines and the ADA haven't worked towards this ... being able to remove a few seats to accommodate wheelchairs.

    Sure I could transfer .. but it's the washroom situation I'm worried about since I don't catheterize but use crede.

    I'll be finished paying off my car a year early and David and I are thinking about taking a trip along the west coast for late 2008 starting from Vancouver.

    P.S. I've obviously never been on a plane in my life... lol ...
    Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

    T-11 Flaccid Paraplegic due to TM July 1985 @ age 12

    #2
    I'd rather be in my chair also. "if" you did crash and then survive do you think someones going to be digging around to bring you your chair? I don't know if you could wheel over the burning rubble anyway but I don't like my chair where I can't reach it. And I haven't been on a plane post injury so I'm just rambling.
    If you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best.


    Sometimes it is easier to widen doors than it is to open minds.

    Comment


      #3
      There is no way I would trust a hostie to secure my chair for takeoffs and landings! Each chair is different as to where you strap them down and locating secure anchor points on the chairs. Not only are you then trusting their equipment, but you are also trusting that your chair is gunna hold to the anchor....if not it could become a missile.

      Comment


        #4
        1. The aisle is far too narrow for a wheelchair to maneuver. You'd never get your chair down to the tie-down spot.

        2. Even one removed seat would mean a huge loss in revenue when it goes unused.

        3. Tie-downs could never meet certification standards. Aircraft seats are designed to meet crash/impact standards. Not all accidents involve loss of life, e.g. the Air France runway incident a while back in Toronto.

        Comment


          #5
          true true. obviously I don't fly much. (:
          If you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best.


          Sometimes it is easier to widen doors than it is to open minds.

          Comment


            #6
            It would be a huge safety factor as far as tiedowns go and there's no way to fit a normal wheelchair in anywhere other than first class and even then, not through the aisles.
            Daniel

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Clipper
              1. The aisle is far too narrow for a wheelchair to maneuver. You'd never get your chair down to the tie-down spot.

              2. Even one removed seat would mean a huge loss in revenue when it goes unused.

              3. Tie-downs could never meet certification standards. Aircraft seats are designed to meet crash/impact standards. Not all accidents involve loss of life, e.g. the Air France runway incident a while back in Toronto.

              1) if they make the first row of seats from where the entry door is the w/c accessible seats it would not be "far too narrow"...I've gotten my w/c in many planes to the first rows of seats.

              2) they could make the airline seat removable much like they make the front passenger seats in van conversions removable, therefore making it such that the seats would NOT go unused/unsold when a chair user was not onboard...The removed seats could be stored in the cargo area of the plane so as they could be re-installed at the destination before re-boarding the next passengers.

              3) There's no reason why tie-downs couldn't meet certification standards. If they can meet safety standards for automobile crash ratings, then they can be made for airline crash ratings. not THAT much difference in making them to meet impact/wight/drop force ratings...and YES, I DO have knowledge about rigging and weight certifications...I'm not randomly speaking out my ass...


              Lynnifer-
              the washrooms are horrendously small and whereas I can get myself into them, it's a balancing act...That in itself is one area where I think aerospace engineers need to work on improving their designs drastically. HOWEVER I don't forsee them ever making them large enough to fit a w/c in b/c they'd take up too much real-estate...
              'Chelle
              L-1 inc 11/24/03

              "My Give-a-Damn's Busted"......

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Broknwing
                3) There's no reason why tie-downs couldn't meet certification standards. If they can meet safety standards for automobile crash ratings, then they can be made for airline crash ratings. not THAT much difference in making them to meet impact/wight/drop force ratings...and YES, I DO have knowledge about rigging and weight certifications...I'm not randomly speaking out my ass...
                Safety standards for commercial aircraft are VERY different than those for automobiles. Below are excerpts of the certification standards for such aircraft. I've bolded key points.

                Each occupant of a seat that makes more than an 18-degree angle with the vertical plane containing the airplane centerline must be protected from head injury by a safety belt and an energy absorbing rest that will support the arms, shoulders, head, and spine, or by a safety belt and shoulder harness that will prevent the head from contacting any injurious object. Each occupant of any other seat must be protected from head injury by a safety belt and, as appropriate to the type, location, and angle of facing of each seat, by one or more of the following: (1) A shoulder harness that will prevent the head from contacting any injurious object. (2) The elimination of any injurious object within striking radius of the head. (3) An energy absorbing rest that will support the arms, shoulders, head, and spine.

                The airplane, although it may be damaged in emergency landing conditions on land or water, must be designed as prescribed in this section to protect each occupant under those conditions. ... The structure must be designed to give each occupant every reasonable chance of escaping serious injury in a minor crash landing when ... the occupant experiences the following ultimate inertia forces acting separately relative to the surrounding structure:

                - Upward, 3.0g
                - Forward, 9.0g
                - Sideward, 3.0g on the airframe
                - Sideward, 4.0g on the seats and their attachments
                - Downward, 6.0g
                - Rearward, 1.5g

                Seats and items of mass (and their supporting structure) must not deform under any loads up to those specified [above] in any manner that would impede subsequent rapid evacuation of occupants.

                The seat and restraint system in the airplane must be designed as prescribed in this section to protect each occupant during an emergency landing condition ...

                Each seat type design approved for crew or passenger occupancy during takeoff and landing must successfully complete dynamic tests or be demonstrated by rational analysis based on dynamic tests of a similar type seat, in accordance with each of the following emergency landing conditions. ...

                - A change in downward vertical velocity (Δ v) of not less than 35 feet per second, with the airplane's longitudinal axis canted downward 30 degrees with respect to the horizontal plane and with the wings level. Peak floor deceleration must occur in not more than 0.08 seconds after impact and must reach a minimum of 14g.

                - A change in forward longitudinal velocity (Δ v) of not less than 44 feet per second, with the airplane's longitudinal axis horizontal and yawed 10 degrees either right or left, whichever would cause the greatest likelihood of the upper torso restraint system (where installed) moving off the occupant's shoulder, and with the wings level. Peak floor deceleration must occur in not more than 0.09 seconds after impact and must reach a minimum of 16g. Where floor rails or floor fittings are used to attach the seating devices to the test fixture, the rails or fittings must be misaligned with respect to the adjacent set of rails or fittings by at least 10 degrees vertically (i.e., out of Parallel) with one rolled 10 degrees.

                Each occupant must be protected from serious head injury under the conditions prescribed [above]. Where head contact with seats or other structure can occur, protection must be provided so that the head impact does not exceed a Head Injury Criterion (HIC) of 1,000 units.

                The seat must remain attached at all points of attachment, although the structure may have yielded.

                Seats must not yield under the tests specified [above] to the extent they would impede rapid evacuation of the airplane occupants.

                Standards for automobiles are far less stringent and can be found in Title 49 CFR, Part 571. Removable seats or tie-downs wouldn't come close to meeting aircraft cert standards.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by lynnifer
                  Why don't the airlines have it so you can sit in your own chair when flying? I mean if you're going to crash .. there will hardly be any survivors anyway. What's the difference between being strapped down in a plane and being strapped down in a vehicle and wearing a seatbelt. I understand there would be turbulence .. but .. I'd be more worried of what's falling out of the overhead bins. I'm just curious why the airlines and the ADA haven't worked towards this ... being able to remove a few seats to accommodate wheelchairs.

                  Sure I could transfer .. but it's the washroom situation I'm worried about since I don't catheterize but use crede.

                  I'll be finished paying off my car a year early and David and I are thinking about taking a trip along the west coast for late 2008 starting from Vancouver.

                  P.S. I've obviously never been on a plane in my life... lol ...
                  Anything to avoid the aisle chair.
                  T6 complete (or so I think), SCI since September 21, 2003

                  Comment


                    #10
                    One thought about this: How many wheelchairs have seatbelts? The chair might not go anywhere, but you might.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by paramoto
                      Anything to avoid the aisle chair.
                      What is the aisle chair like? It looks to be about 14" wide if you're lucky .. lol .. and is the seat hard? I just hate that I wouldn't be able to move myself.
                      Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

                      T-11 Flaccid Paraplegic due to TM July 1985 @ age 12

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Yup, I think you have the right picture. Think Hannibal Lechter with the cross-chest seatbelt, fun stuff. I miss hopping on a plane all the time, but with all the bs involved with that now...not really. Still miss it though. Enjoy the flight, not sure how many hours you will be flying, or how crede works, but I think that maybe a bathroom visit might be out of the picture, seemed to me that the isle chair was not kept on the plane in the whopping 2 flights I took since my injury.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by lynnifer
                          What is the aisle chair like? It looks to be about 14" wide if you're lucky .. lol .. and is the seat hard? I just hate that I wouldn't be able to move myself.
                          Aisle chair is no problem. Sure its hard but you don't spend much time in it. Unless they loose your wheel chair as happened to a friend of mine on a lousy little (one hour) domestic flight within BC. Westjet too, I thought they had their shit together (unlike Air Canada). That's the only reason I'd want to stay in my chair, to "keep an eye on it", so it doesn't end up in Timbuktoo.

                          Lynnifer, if you can solve you "peeing problem", you would rather sit in an airplane seat, (much more comfortable, believe me) than your wheel chair. They usually make sure you get an aisle seat. There is to hoping that the arm rest will flip up. On some planes they don't but then the crew will lift you over it, because it is hard to transfer over it yourself. (At least I have a hard time of it)
                          Step up, stand up for:
                          http://www.stepnow.org

                          'He not busy being born is busy dying." <Bob Dylan>

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by lynnifer
                            .

                            Sure I could transfer .. but it's the washroom situation I'm worried about since I don't catheterize but use crede.

                            I'll be finished paying off my car a year early and David and I are thinking about taking a trip along the west coast for late 2008 starting from Vancouver.

                            P.S. I've obviously never been on a plane in my life... lol ...
                            Lynnifer,
                            Believe me, you won't be able to get into a plane toilet with your wheel chair and most likely not with the tiny aisle chair either. Theu are about the size of a broom closet.) At least not in economy class. Don't know about first or business class. I am not that rich.
                            Better use a leg bag. Make sure its empty before you start out. The one long flight I was on (since my injury) I brought along a water bottle (not made out of clear white plastic ) discreetly emptied my leg bag into said water bottle and asked a flight attendant to empty it for me (and bring it back again.) They were very good about it and the whole thing was no problem at all.

                            (You are welcome to visit me when you are out west.)
                            Step up, stand up for:
                            http://www.stepnow.org

                            'He not busy being born is busy dying." <Bob Dylan>

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Clipper can probably give you better reasons than I can Lynn but DO NOT fly on a JPU made in Brazil. They were made for miniture pygmies. Honestly, the flight attendant couldn't move her cart when an ice cube got between it and the edge of the flooring. I think only Continental Economy flies them but they are the worst jets I have ever experienced. And the fire marshall at BWI refuses to let them use skyways so I was tied Lector style on a milk crate and slid out the forward door where I was saved from falling off a makeshift elevator by a DHL guy working in a bay over. The airport considers them a fire hazard so when we boarded one in Newark and suddenly heard the wheels come down too soon for landing the Captain came on to explain they needed to burn excess fuel..and so we flew to Baltimore with the wheels down. Oh, and there are no slides or ladders that I saw in the emergency booklet. Basically, you jump out the 6 feet down to land or water in a crash. Other than those one type of jets flying is not too bad. With Southwest get to the gate early and you can normally use your own chair until someone lifts you or you transfer yourself to a front row seat. Then they gate check your chair and remind the attendant about a half hour from landing that you have a gate checked chair. For the long hauls British Air often has economy Business Class. Beats sardine class by tons! This is why we use a travel agent still.

                              And I've had cold and nasty crossings in May to Dover and warm, smooth ones in April. Just goes by the weather. Try to go by way of the Azores and the sun is warmer if you sail back. :-)
                              Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow."

                              Disclaimer: Answers, suggestions, and/or comments do not constitute medical advice expressed or implied and are based solely on my experiences as a SCI patient. Please consult your attending physician for medical advise and treatment. In the event of a medical emergency please call 911.

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