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The Safest Seats on a Plane

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Some seats on an airplane are safer than others…

Get a seat near an exit. The closer your seat is to an exit, the better your odds of getting out alive if the plane crashes. Passengers who are within six rows of the nearest viable exit have a greater chance of surviving than dying if they survive the initial impact.

Warning: On many aircraft, including the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320, the exit hatch over the wing is significantly smaller than the exits to the front and rear of the plane. Sit near a large exit if possible—the smaller the opening, the longer it will take each passenger to get through. If you are seated a similar distance from a large exit and a small one, head for the large one in an accident.

Favor the aisle. Passengers sitting in aisle seats have a slightly higher chance of evacuating the aircraft than those seated in most window seats—though window seats in exit rows are best of all.

Warning: Keep your shoes on for takeoffs and landings, which is when most crashes occur. Shoeless passengers have a more difficult time escaping through the debris of a crashed plane.

For information, go to FSEG.gre.ac.uk.

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Source: Edwin R. Galea, PhD, director of the Fire Safety Engineering Group at University of Greenwich in London. He studied more than 100 plane crashes to determine who survives plane crashes and why. Date: June 15, 2015 Publication: Bottom Line Personal
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