As Brazil battles setbacks on the way to completing the 2014 World Cup stadiums that will be used in this summer's Confederations Cup, one of the certainties is that there will special seats reserved for obese fans.
A report in The Sun claims that the seats for obese people will be twice as wide as standard seats and reinforced to support a person who weighs up to 560 lbs. But the style of seats pictured in their story were torn up from the Castelao -- the first of Brazil's World Cup stadiums to have its renovations completed. NBC Sports' Rick Chandler did some investigating though, and it turns out that some form of seats reserved for obese people are an actual thing.
The twelve 2014 World Cup Arenas are designed to offer the highest comfort and convenience to supporters. Accessibility is an important item for inclusion, also a requirement by the Brazilian government and FIFA. The Castelão in Fortaleza is an example of how football may bring about this type of legacy in the country. From the total of 63,903 seats, 1,675 are reserved for obese people, or people with disabilities.
This number corresponds to 2.4% of the stadium's capacity, which is more than the minimum requirement of 1% anticipated by the World Cup General Bill and administrative rule No 205 of the Ministry of Sport, that regulates the issue. At the Castelão, 335 seats are reserved for wheel chair users, 1,220 for people with reduced mobility and 120 for obese people. The seats are spread throughout the lower ring and cater for views from all angles of the pitch.
According to FIFA's website, there are three types of tickets available to Brazil residents with disabilities: wheelchair users, obese people and mobility impaired people. The cheapest disabled access tickets are R$114 ($57), as they are all in the lower ring and allow for a companion to be brought free of charge. It's unclear if that applies to the obese as well or if its implied that the extra size accounts for that companion. The cheapest standard tickets are R$57 ($28), as they are in the upper level and don't allow for a free companion. Unless you stand on a friend's shoulders and wear a long trenchcoat like something out of Scooby Doo.