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Stronger airline seats with airbags might just save your life, even on a business trip

Tim Stevens

If you're a product recall specialist hoping for your relatives to bank it big on an airline disaster-related life insurance claim, this post isn't for you. For everyone else who'd like a greater chance of walking away from a decidedly rough landing, here's your ticket. New airline safety regulations going into effect this fall require that all airline seats stay intact even under an impact of 16 times the force of gravity -- nearly double the old nine G requirement. As of now any aircraft model introduced after 1988 has the sturdier new seats, but starting October 27 all planes will. Additionally, a number of airlines are starting to have seats sporting airbags but, wouldn't you know it, they're largely found in first class. Ostensibly that's because the greater gaps between seats means in an impact your calm, blank face won't get restrained by the tray of the seat ahead, but you know the truth, don't you?

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