Passengers Could Be Weighed At Airports To Cut Down Fuel Costs
The weighing of plane passengers is a heavily debated topic. Although it's important for a flight company to measure the appropriate weight on board for flight safety and efficiency, the idea of forcing people to hit the scales before they go through security is controversial in itself.
It has also led to some nasty outcomes, like the woman who was fat-shamed by a businessman during her flight.
One British tech start-up reckons it's got the answer to all of these problems, with the development of an innovative technology that could discreetly weigh passengers in a bid to cut fuel costs and emissions and boost flight safety.
Fuel Matrix - a startup founded by CEO Roy Fuscone - is reportedly in talks with several UK airlines to introduce tactful 'pressure pads' to calculate the weight of passengers as they pass through an airport so that the exact fuel needed for each flight can be calculated.
The hidden pads would operate either at check-in or could even be placed at self-service luggage drop-offs, overcoming the issue of appearing insensitive to customers. Not only could this increase flight safety, but it could also cut down the environmental impact of each flight.
As it stands, airlines currently estimate how much fuel they need based on average weights for each customer - 88kg (13.8 stone) for men, 70kg (11 stone) for women and 35kg (5.5 stone) for children.
However, Fuel Matrix says that this method is no longer accurate and flights often burn up more fuel than is needed. If they could adopt this new method and work out the exact weight, savings of fuel could allegedly amount to as much as £750 million worldwide.
Nick Brasier, chief operating officer of the Berkshire startup, told The Independent: "More airports and airlines are moving towards self-service bag drops, where the passenger uses a screen-based system to weigh their baggage on scales and answer questions about its contents.
"We're not suggesting people should stand on the scales, but airports could fit 'pressure pads' in the bag-drop area in front of each screen.
"After the bag has been checked in, the system can ask, 'Are you standing on the pressure pad?'.
"If the passenger taps 'Yes', then the weight can be recorded and passed confidentially to the airline."
Heavier passengers wouldn't be charged extra under this proposed scheme if airlines do decide to adopt it at their locations across the UK.
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