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VS Payout to Pax injured by Obese neighbour

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VS Payout to Pax injured by Obese neighbour

Old 21st Oct 2002, 13:32
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VS Payout to Pax injured by Obese neighbour

THIS from the BBC.

The question is why book 2 seats outbound and only one return?

In any case the injured party has my full sympathy. I have been in a similar position as well, I was lucky as there was a seat that I could be moved to and "oh dear" it was in First
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Old 21st Oct 2002, 22:07
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Why are VS paying the compensation?

OK, they did not help the situation but the person to do the paying is the obese woman who caused the injury.

As she purchased two seats on the outbound sector, she must have been obese then and it did not creep up on her during her stay in London.
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Old 22nd Oct 2002, 22:27
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These Obese lot should be forced to pay for 2 seats, all been discussed I know, in the vast majority of cases, it is their fault they gorge themselves on bad foods & do no excercise. If they want to give themselves heart, liver problems & diabeties - I don't care, as long as I don't have to pay for their treatment. If they tried to sit next to me & raise the arm, there would be trouble
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Old 23rd Oct 2002, 13:18
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Daywalker...You should work at the U.N. with a post like that!!

Perhaps the solution is to sell the space in an aircraft, rather than the seat. A bit like the cabin bag testers, let them know what they have to fit into & buy accordingly....caveat emptor!
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Old 23rd Oct 2002, 13:25
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PaxBoy, I would guess Virgin have agreed a payout due to the farcical legal system of our great and good country! (ie - it's cheaper, and less time-consuming, to agree a private out of court settlement than it would be to continue with litigation. Even if Virgin were absolved from responsibility, the legal costs would be astronomical!

Additionally, Virgin end up re-establishing good relations with their customer, and enjoy relatively good press reportage into the bargain!

As a staff traveller, a few years ago, I travelled back to LHR in seat 20B of a 747-400 from Seattle. I had "Fatso" in 20A and "Lofty" in 20C as my companions. "Fatso's" a**e occupied 60% of my seat whilst "Lofty's" legs occupied 80% of my leg space. I was bruised and sore for days afterwards too, but as I had paid a fraction of the proper fare, I wouldn't dream of complaining!

Nevertheless, the experience did teach me to sympathise with the "Single" guy or lady who ends up with a middle seat.........whilst I can't always do anything about it, I always do my damndest to change the seat at flight closure!
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Old 23rd Oct 2002, 15:54
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If this were pursued inthe US, the passenger would have gone after Virgin as the "deeper pocket." I also think Virgin would have had some liability, in their contract to transport the passenger from point A to point B, to do so in a not harmful fashion.
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Old 23rd Oct 2002, 17:47
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The injured party was being interviewed on BBC Radio yesterday and stated that the obese woman's husband was actually sitting in the row behind - not daft was he!

He was asked if he would change seats by the cabin crew, but declined.
Talk about looking after his own ass-ets!!
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Old 23rd Oct 2002, 22:41
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bealine - I agree. I had thought those thoughts but decided on a short reply (For Once!! everyone else cries!)

I had not heard that the husband was in the row behind - WOW that is going some. My only bad brush with a large person was this story (now back to my usual long winded self!)

JNB ~ LHR, 1988 (it was a trip to South Africa that I remember for many reasons and not just this one!). It was SAA and I was in Club in the 'A' seat.

The pax due for 'B' arrived and was HUGE. when he slumped into the seat he filled it to capacity. He was so big, he was flowing up the sides of a Club seat ...

When he went to put his seat belt on, it broke and came away in his hand. He seemed puzzeled as what to do next. Happily, I knew!!! I buzzed for F/A right away as I knew that they could not secure the cabin with him unbelted. That said, he was so tight in the seat it would have to be one helluva emergeny braking to prise him out of it.

The F/A took him away and put him in a spare seat in the centre section, as there were two empty seats together. I noticed that, at meal time, the seat (from the arm rest) would not go flat because of too much PAX. So he had to open the table on the adjacent seat and place the tray there!!

So, I landed up with two seats to myself, I removed the armrest, as was possible at that time on the 747-300 in SAA, and had a very pleasant flight!

Oh yes, one other thing ... he smelt. In fact, he STANK. The sweat was running off him ...
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Old 25th Oct 2002, 12:52
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This case received a great deal of publicity, mostly sympathetic to the victim. Realistically, though, what is an airline to do when a real porker turns up for a flight, not having taken an additional seat to allow for the inevitable overspill? Is this something that should be covered in the terms of carriage, using the normal sized seat belt as the standard (if it won't fit, we cannot carry you in economy?).

I haven't, as yet, had the long haul ordeal of a seat next to a human mountain but as the obesity problem increases, I imagine its going to happen one day. What would happen if I refused point blank to take my seat and, in the absence of any alternative being available, announced I would not travel for health reasons? Presumably my luggage has to be located and removed from the aircraft (with commensurate delay). I haven't heard of these circumstances in a legal action - anyone know of one or got any views on the likely outcome?
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Old 25th Oct 2002, 14:09
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and the solution is ...

Rudy Park
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Old 25th Oct 2002, 14:13
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quality
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Old 25th Oct 2002, 15:32
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Solution

Allocate rear window seats as "fat" - thus only one direction spillover. On a BA777 I was on lately the 39 row had no reclining seat [so harder to break] and only two abreast rather than three in Traveller. If nobody sitting behind, no-one to injure if the seat snaps back.

As someone who has done LHR-YUL in 39K, it's as good a slimming incentive as I can think of!

Still, seat width as well as pitch should be an issue. Personally I fit nicely into the seat mostly but prefer more pitch - I'm 6'2 and I want a bigger pitch with paying more!! Being tall is a medical disability!! Wah wah wah! Lawyers away!
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Old 1st Nov 2002, 09:56
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This issue gets my goat. Economy class seats are designed as one-size-fits-all, an ideal that will never apply to 100% of the population.

I've a deal of sympathy for overweight people, having dabbled in unsaturated fats before I rediscovered the joys of exercise. But they have to be realistic. They can have bigger seats and more legroom - bigger portions too - and they can pay for the privelege, like everyone in business class. But I wish they wouldn't demand larger pews in economy and expect everyone else to subsidise this.

Perhaps fares-by-the-kilo would address the problem...
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Old 1st Nov 2002, 10:31
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While some passengers will undoubtedly be too large to fit in any reasonably sized airline seat , I think that airlines must bear some responsibility for the lack of space they give passengers.

A study carried out by ICE Ergonomics for the CAA earlier this year recommended an 'ideal' seat width of 23 inches (and minimum seat pitch of 29.4 inches). Yet most airline seat widths (especially on charter flights) are around 16-17 inches.

M&S and other clothes retailers have recently altered their sizes to take account of the changing proportions of the population, and it is time that airlines woke up and did the same. Yes, the seates may cost a bit more, but we are getting to the stage, with DVT and the like, where seat size and leg pitch are not just a matter of comfort but of health and safety (the ICE study also found that the CAA's minimum 26 inch seat pitch does not give enough room for safe emergency evacuation).
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Old 1st Nov 2002, 13:30
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Most things in life have to be paid for according to the quantity or amount used. One burger = xxx Three burgers = 3xxx

If fatties want us to subsidise them by forcing the airlines to put in bigger seats, thereby reducing capacity and revenue, and putting up our ticket costs, then by the same perverse logic they should subsidise me for the higher cost of my house being in the South East, just because I choose to live there. Like they choose to shovel in food and choose not to do enough exercise.

Next the porkies will be trying to sue car makers because the big car they need to transport the excess blubber from one place to another costs more than a smaller one. I could go on but it's all been said before.

Price per kilo sounds great. Next time I'm a few pounds over the baggage limit I think I'll ask if it would make a difference if the extra weight was attached to my body rather than being in my bag!

*Rant Off*

CS
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Old 1st Nov 2002, 13:37
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Sorry singaporegirl, I disagree.

I'd classify my proportions as average. I'll not pretend I enjoy airline seating, but I find it adequate for its purpose and I'm happy to pay the lowest fare for a minimum of space.

I don't want to pay for room I don't really need, just because some others are partial to the pantry. And DVT, as I understand it, is induced by long periods of inactivity rather than seating ergonomics.

As I say, if you want a bigger seat, you can fly business class.
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Old 1st Nov 2002, 21:24
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Crepello - I agree! I often buy a seat in biz, when travelling long haul on my own account.

DVT is related to inaction and I recall us being told to exercise when I first flew long haul in December 1965. Or was that just for those of us in The Junior Jet Club?

People have got used to paying less money to go further. In order to sell more seats, they were told that is was "Just like going on a bus." That view, once taken in, cannot be changed easily. Hence the junk they bring into the cabin. Hence their lack of interest in saftey. Etcetera.

The Brits in particular, do not like paying the going rate. This is behind much of the problems that we have with tax funded public services. They want the service but do not want to pay the tax!

Last edited by PAXboy; 2nd Nov 2002 at 19:41.
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Old 4th Nov 2002, 18:01
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Crepello,

With respect, you miss my point. I was talking about minimum standards of comfort (and safety). If we have reached the stage where the size and pitch of the seats does not give enough room for safe emergency evacuation, then things have gone too far. There will always be overweight passengers who find it a squeeze to get into any seat, but if your definition of overweight is anyone whose behind measures more than 16 inches across, I suspect more than 90 per cent of the population would qualify!

I would classify my proportions as below average, and what's more I've never taken my full luggage allowance. But I don't go round demanding that luggage allowance gets cut to 15kg just because I've never needed to take any more (though some airlines have ). I don't drink tea or coffee but don't demand that others should pay extra because I'm subsidising their hot drinks (but I can travel on no-frills airlines where they do have to). But I would like to be able to sit in an economy seat without the headrest of the seat in front propping up my chin when it reclines, and not to have the person next to me leaning their head on my shoulder as they fall asleep.

Why should I have to fork out for business class to guarantee a minimum level of comfort? I'm not asking for free champagne, menus on demand, neck and shoulder massages and endless glossy magazines (though I wouldn't say no ). American Airlines managed to remove 10 per cent of its seats in economy class without affecting fares, and has been flooded with commendations ever since.
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Old 5th Nov 2002, 15:43
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Moving slightly off topic...
At least the BBC web site managed to get a picture of a Virgin plane which is actually in use. The story was also reported in the "National Newspaper for Wales", the Western Mail, where they used a Virgin badged A380 to illustrate the tale. Does this paper know something that the pprune folk don't? I think we should be told.
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Old 6th Nov 2002, 15:59
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vis a vis the "you get what you pay for lobby!"

Before the "jet age", seats were wider and had more leg space. Even after the De Havilland Comet's intoduction, seats were comfortable.

However, there was a 2 tier class system for long-haul, and as 1 class system for shorts. Even in the early days of the 747, we had spacious cabins with seating of 2-3-2 in economy!

Indeed, even today, by IATA agreements, ALL fares within Europe are supposed to be at "C" class (Business).........any other code on your ticket is a "special" excursion fare. If all our tickets were "C" rated, I can assure you seat size wouldn't be an issue!

It is the harsh reality of Profit v What the Public are Prepared to Pay that determines how many people we pack into each aluminium tube!

You will also appreciate, if you're in business, that it's very easy to reduce prices but extremely difficult to harden them again once the public have got used to bargains!

When you see flights to Mallorca advertised at 29 return (cheaper than I can drive into London and back), don't you just know it's going to be a "knee in the chest" job!!!

Regrettably, in this life you do get what you pay for and, human nature being what it is, most people would rather "rough it" for 8 hours on the aircraft and have a better hotel for their two week holiday, than pay for better seats and downgrade the hotel!

Can I suggest a topic for Diastrous Holiday experiences?


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