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Jazz Air Drops Life Vests

August 29, 2008 By: Kirk Cassels

If you have clients who want to travel to Canada but are at all nervous about flying, or drowning for that matter, definitely do not book a flight for them on Air Canada's regional carrier Jazz. The Associated Press reports that Jazz is removing life vests from all of its planes.

The reason? Fuel costs, of course. The airline is looking to lighten the load of its aircraft, thereby making the aircraft more fuel efficient. An airline spokesperson told the Associated Press that  Transport Canada regulations allow airlines to use flotation devices (a fancy term for a passengers' seat cushions) instead of life vests, if the planes remain within 50 miles of shore. The spokesperson also noted that because Jazz is a transcontinental carrier it doesn't fly over the ocean, it only flies over the Great Lakes. Hence, the chances of crashing in water are minimal compared to the probability of crashing on land. Of course, although not as large, there are other lakes, ponds, reservoirs and rivers along the Eastern seaboard from Halifax, Nova Scotia, to Boston and New York— the airline's flight route.

A commercial-style life vest weighs nearly one pound, which means at 50 seats per Dash-8 aircraft for Jazz that 50 pounds would be saved by removing the flotation devices.

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