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BALLAST Coast Guard Plans for Fatter Riders Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Coast Guard Plans for Fatter Riders

The Coast Guard officially recognized that people are heavier than they used to be, raising the assumed average weight of passengers to 185 pounds, rather than the 160 pounds it’s been for the last 50 years. Many big boats, such as ferries in Washington State and Georgia, have responded to the rules by lowering their vessel’s capacity. But other boat owners have decided to undergo new stability tests to show they can handle heftier passengers without lowering their capacity or risking safety.

January 2, 2012 7:13 AM