9/1/2009

Unless the airlines and FAA can work together to correct the tarmac delay problem, "Congress is going to correct it for them," Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., said in a speech on Monday. While one passenger-rights advocate says tarmac delays are a matter of "safety, dignity and well-being" for fliers, the airline industry says a hard-and-fast rule for deplaning could have the opposite effect of what it intends to accomplish. "Our biggest concern is safety," insists a spokeswoman for the Air Transport Association, noting that a federal standard could have "unintended consequences." For instance, she said, a three-hour limit could force passengers to deplane in the middle of an electrical storm.

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