Those Darn Seatbacks


Well-Known Member
Since I now know that Jetcareers is the bastion of everything good in aviation, I'll post this question that I've always wondered about.......

What exactly is the logic behind seatbacks and tray tables in the full and upright and most uncomfortable position for takeoff and landing? Certainly my survival in a crash isn't affected by a 6 inch difference in my seatback.....
You are probably right, if it isnt a safety issue, it is probably to prepare the cabin for a quicker turnaround, reliving the crew of having to go through and return all the seats upright and fastening all the tray tables...
As far as I know, it is because the extra room for passengers behind the seats to get out of their row in case of an emergency. Tray tables of course for many more safety reasons.
I believe it is for that; on some aircraft with over wing exits the seats infront do not recline which I believe is for that very reason.
The safety rules you see in place on airlines are rules written in blood. There have been airline crashes in the past where people have died because the person in front of them had their seat reclined, and were unable to get out from their seating area in time. Tray tables also inhibit egress from seats.
One thing that irritated me to no end was how many times I would ask people to put their carry on bags UNDER THE SEAT IN FRONT OF THEM, not behind thier legs, between their feet or on their lap! During an evacuation the last thing you want is to be tripping over your (or somebody else's) damn bags!
The 'extra legroom' in exit rows is to allow more room for people to access and get out of the exits, and the limited seat recline for seats in front of exit rows is so people can't ignore the rules and happen to have their seats reclined and block the exit.
Child car seats can not be placed in an exit row, or a row forward or aft of an exit row. This is because of the exit operation procedures that sometimes call for an exit to be tossed into a seat.
Basically what I'm trying to say is that all the rules and regulations that you see out there are in place for a reason, and it's not just the F/As trying to be militant or difficult.

Any other quesitons about cabin safety please feel free to ask me, I was a new-hire flight attendant ground school and IOE instructor for many years at Eagle.
On another board some one mentioned they have heard crews using this one liner; I am not sure if it is true, but I thought it was funny!

This is a quick message from the flight deck - we are 10 miles from Los Angeles and our system says we have 12 passengers without seatbelts on, 2 tray tables down, and 4 chairs still reclined, these need to be corrected for safety reasons before we can land. Thank You.
Well, now I know.

I was on an ATA flight from San Juan to Orlando yesterday, and when they mentioned it, I thought to myself, "I know, I'll start a thread on the topic."
Seeing we're talking about crash survivability, here's an interesting fact:

In the first row of the Jetstream 41 there are airbags in the seatbelts. No children, lap-kids, or seatbelt extenders allowed.
Tray tables also inhibit egress from seats.

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I would also think that in a crash, an open tray table would be in the perfect spot to slam into someone's chest.