American Airlines Faces Record $24.2M Fine

FAA says it didn't correct faulty wiring
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 26, 2010 6:56 PM CDT
A worker looks at the tail section of an American Airlines MD-80 aircraft at Dallas Fort Worth airport in 2008.   (AP Photo/LM Otero)

(Newser) – The FAA is apparently trying to prove it can't be bulled by the airlines. It plans to fine American Airlines $24.2 million—that's more than twice the size of the current record fine—over maintenance violations, reports USA Today. The agency alleges that American flew thousands of unsafe flights in 2008 until it fixed a wiring issue, a charge the airline denies.

It's likely that American will get the fine reduced in negotiations, though it will almost certainly remain a record penalty. The New York Times notes that the FAA is getting more aggressive these days to counter the reputation that it goes too easy on the industry. "There can be no compromises when it comes to safety," transportation chief Ray LaHood said in a statement.

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