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More is Less

Tuesday 5 June 2012
The United States Coast Guard recently reclassified the average weight of a passenger to be 185 pounds (that is about 13.2 stone and 84kg) to reflect the growing size of their citizens.

This is an increase of 25% on the previous weight of an average passenger. The sad result of these measures is that smaller classic yachts which were designed to take a certain number of passengers that had the stature of previous generations must now take a quarter less of the heavier population. This is resulting in already hard pressed companies having to turn away bookings for larger numbers of passengers and in making lower margins when they do fill their yachts.

The coast guard is to be commended not just in modifying their rules to ensure yachts have a safe number of passengers but also in their flexible approach (companies are not constrained by an absolute number of passengers and can opt to weigh their customers if they wish, thereby taking more, lighter guests).

Is there an answer to this problem? Yes, but it is not in the hands of the mariners. It is yet another benefit of good public health.