U.S. Department of Transportation regulators ordered airlines to stop the practice of holding passengers for hours on grounded airplanes. Under the new rules, airlines will have to get travelers in the air within three hours or let them off the plane. Airlines could face fines of as much as $27,500 per passenger for violations.
The new rules also say that airlines must provide adequate food and potable water for passengers within two hours of an aircraft being delayed on the tarmac. Additionally, airlines must maintain "operable lavatories" and provide passengers on delayed aircraft with necessary medical attention. The rules go into effect in about three months, officials said.
About time. Three hours seems reasonable, as long as there is a damned good reason. After that, consider the flight cancelled and refund passengers. But it should go into effect IMMEDIATELY - not in three months. More to the point: why should it require the DOT to regulate airlines from holding customers as prisoners? There is no friggin' way I would allow any business to keep me locked up overnight. I would not permit it, period. People who have tolerated this in the past must be spineless jellyfish.