3/19/2010

A federal watchdog on Thursday issued a report critical of the FAA for failing to more aggressively monitor maintenance at Southwest Airlines. "If meaningful change is to occur," wrote Associate Special Counsel William Reukauf, "FAA managers must be held accountable for their complicity with airline noncompliance." But Southwest responded that the report was merely a repeat of earlier issues that have already been addressed -- including a $7.5 million fine the carrier agreed to pay last year. "The settlement with the FAA in March 2009 has allowed us to focus on safety going forward, rather than on issues that are now behind us and that have already been addressed," a spokeswoman said.

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