I got this from AVWeb.com, this revelation has surprised me considering in the past there has been so much empathsis placed on aircraft safety and evacuations. How much more effort would it take for aircraft manufacturers to do the full scale tests with "real" people.
FAA DECISION FLIES IN FACE OF NTSB, CONSUMER GROUPS
The FAA's long-standing policy to require full-scale emergency evacuation testing of new airliner designs is changing. Now, aircraft manufacturers can show "analysis" instead to prove that all occupants of the plane can be safely evacuated. The NTSB opposes the decision, saying analysis of the type the FAA is talking about is unreliable and unsafe.
How does everyone else feel about this new policy? Even with all the computer technology it still just is not the same.