(Natural News) The global obesity epidemic, which is especially critical in Western societies, is causing ripple effects in industries outside of traditional medicine as they struggle — literally — to accommodate people who are straining the system, so to speak.
One of the affected industries is transportation and, in particular, air transport. One Finnish airline is preparing to implement a new policy: All passengers will be weighed prior to boarding flights so that they can more accurately gauge fuel use.
Officials with the airline, Finnair, told CNBC that it has already asked about 180 passengers to step on a scale before stepping onto flights out of Helsinki International Airport last week. In all, the airline needs to weigh about 2,000 passengers in order to get an accurate reading of passenger weights and their carry-on baggage.
The just-launched study will be continued into next year, officials said, because they allegedly want to see how overall flight weights differ from when passengers are carrying heavy winter coats versus when they are traveling lighter in weather that is warmer. Airline officials said they would protect passenger privacy and keep the data private.
CNBC reported further:
The aim of the weigh-ins, which might be more familiar to travelers who have flown on small planes, is to update nearly decade-old data on average passenger weights as it expands its route network and needs to accurately forecast payloads and how much fuel it requires.
"We have a strong safety culture at Finnair, and are also a very data-driven organization, so we want to ensure we have the best possible data in use in aircraft performance and loading calculations," Finnair officials said in a statement.