The Department of Transportation (DOT) is finally moving forward with some updates to the Air Carrier Access Act. There are a number of minor changes being considered, but the biggest issue affecting wheelchair-users is the possible inclusion of the requirement for airlines to provide accessible lavatories on single aisle aircraft.
Currently only wide body airplanes are required to have accessible lavatories, but it appears the DOT is moving to expand that. The proposed rule will be released this spring, but most likely the DOT will deem that it’s now economically feasible to require accessible lavatories on smaller planes, since AirBus can equip its A320s with Space-Flex accessible lavatories. After publication in the Federal Register, the proposed rule will be open for public comment before the final rule is issued. For more information on the proposed rule, visit www.regulations.gov.