HC Deb 14 April 1937 vol 322 cc1000-1
55. Colonel Ropner

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Air whether he is aware that the windows of the Empire flying boats are of such a size that in case of emergency it would not be possible for passengers to escape thereby; and whether he will consider the advisability of issuing instructions that whenever possible windows of all passenger aeroplanes should be sufficiently large to allow passengers to escape through them?

Sir P. Sassoon

The windows of the Empire boats are specially constructed to withstand buffeting from the sea in heavy weather, and consequently are not intended for use as emergency exits. Adequate emergency exits are, however, provided from all passenger compartments of these boats, and the dimensions of all these exits are larger than the minimum considered necessary for safety.

Colonel Ropner

Is it not a fact that the emergency exits are in the roof and, if the machine is on its back, incapable of use?

Mr. Macquisten

Will the right hon. Baronet see that these emergency exits are not sufficiently large to enable certain people to commit spectacular suicide?