Airlines are balking at a US Federal Aviation Administration proposal to mandate installation of 16g seats on almost the entire US passenger jet fleet. The long-anticipated ruling would require airlines operating under Part 121 rules to retrofit their aircraft with 16g seats over the next 14 years. Manufacturers would need to install the new seats on all transport-category aircraft over the next four years. At present, seats are required to meet the 16g impact specification only in aircraft type-certificated after 1988, such as the Boeing 777. The FAA's proposed rule would cover all aircraft manufactured after 1958, which mostly have seats rated to withstand a 9g impact. The FAA estimates the projected $519 million cost of the action is reasonable. Manufacturers and airlines have been aware for years that the 16g standard was an eventuality, but the Air Transport Association says the proposed ruling "will be difficult" to meet.

Source: Flight International