Did anyone else see this? The USCG is reducing the number of people that a ferry or other commercial vessel can carry, by about 14%. Why, because people are fatter now!
So lay off the Big Macs people. Hit the gym. Or at least bring some skinny people on trips with you.
I wonder if this will change the placards on new dinghys, to restrict them to carrying fewer people.
(One factor they seem to have missed is that fatter people float better. They also do better in cold water. First hand experience on those facts.)
Fatter passengers means fewer on boats
Coast Guard sets new standards
April 02, 2011|By Robert Nolin, Sun Sentinel
The U.S. Coast Guard is bringing new meaning to the term "gross tonnage."
In recent decades Americans have become a little too, shall we say, portly. And that's led to new rules on how many of us can safely be crowded aboard passenger vessels.
Since the early '60s the Coast Guard's standard weight for an average boat passenger has been 160 pounds. That's been the basis on which commercial vessel operators — everyday private motorboaters are exempt — calculate the number of passengers they may carry.
But changes in our collective waistline — 34 percent of adults over 20 are overweight — have prompted the Coast Guard to assign a few more pounds on the average boat passenger.
"People weigh significantly more now," Coast Guard spokeswoman Lisa Novak said from her Washington, D.C., office. "The average weight per person has increased to 185 pounds."
---- and here's the article from the Boston Globe -----
Coast Guard: Americans getting fatter
Posted by Paul Makishima, Globe Assistant Sunday Editor April 5, 2011 11:44 AM
Coast Guard: Americans getting fatter - Globe-trotting - The Boston Globe
In case you need more evidence that Americans are tipping those scales a bit harder the US Coast Guard is cutting the number of passengers allowed on passenger vessels. Since the 1960s the Coast Guard assumed a standard weight of 160 pounds for an average boat passenger in making safety rules for commercial vessel operators, according to a report in the South Florida Sun Sentinel [the article above - Bene505].
But given that these days an estimated 34 percent of adults over 20 are overweight the Coast Guard has opted, far safety's sake, to assume that the average passenger is a bit heavier than back in the day. "People weigh significantly more now," Coast Guard spokeswoman Lisa Novak told the newspaper. "The average weight per person has increased to 185 pounds."
The new rules will kick in Dec. 1. Basically what this means is that a boat with a 16,000-pound capacity, which formerly could have carried 100 passengers, will only be allowed to ferry 86 people. The limits won't affect personal boaters but will affect vessels that require an annual Coast Guard inspection like ferries, sightseeing or excursion boats.