Department of Transportation

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DOT in 'Crisis' Mode Over New Stats on Road Fatalities

They've hit a 15-year high, with more than 20K dead in US during first half of 2021

(Newser) - With more people back in schools and offices, that means there are more people on the road. But time stuck at home apparently hasn't done any favors for our driving skills, based on new stats from the Department of Transportation that show the highest number of traffic fatalities in...

Feds Clear Path for New Northeast Tunnel

It will replace the existing Hudson River tunnel connecting NY and NJ

(Newser) - A planned $11 billion rail tunnel key to train travel up and down the northeastern US received a boost Friday with long sought federal environmental approval. The decision by the Department of Transportation means the project to build a new Hudson River tunnel connecting New York and New Jersey can...

Buttigieg's New Job Makes 'Perfect Sense'
Buttigieg's New Job
Makes 'Perfect Sense'
OPINION

Buttigieg's New Job Makes 'Perfect Sense'

He'll have ample opportunity to shine as transportation secretary, writes Chris Cillizza

(Newser) - It's official: President-elect Joe Biden has chosen Pete Buttigieg as his transportation secretary. "I trust Mayor Pete to lead this work with focus, decency, and a bold vision," Biden said Tuesday, per USA Today . But does Buttigieg really want to lead the Transportation Department? "Isn't...

Feds Say Airlines Can Ban Emotional Support Animals

Agency tightens definition of service animals

(Newser) - The government has decided that when it comes to air travel, only dogs can be service animals, and companions used for emotional support don't count. The Transportation Department issued a final rule Wednesday that aims to settle years of tension between airlines and passengers who bring their pets on...

Driver 'Trusted in What the Limo Company Said': Widow

Kim Lisinicchia says fatal crash 'still would've happened' despite husband lacking permit

(Newser) - The widow of limousine driver Scott Lisinicchia, one of 20 to die in Saturday's crash in upstate New York, says Prestige Limousine "should have been more responsible." Kim Lisinicchia describes multiple safety violations by company vehicles as "unacceptable" for "a company where you have people'...

Feds Roll Out Self-Driving Car Guidelines

They're not going to leave it up to the states

(Newser) - Obama administration officials have rolled out a plan they say will enable automakers to get self-driving cars onto the road without compromising safety. In drawing up 112 pages of guidelines, the government tried to be vague enough to allow innovation while at the same time making sure that automakers, tech...

Your Pilot May Not Remember How to Fly a Plane

Feds warn about skills fading away as automation takes over

(Newser) - Where's Ted Striker when you need him? Probably not at the helm of a commercial flight, according to a new Department of Transportation report . It finds that automation has driven manual flying mostly out of the cockpit, leading to concerns that pilots may not be getting enough training to...

New Rule: No E-Cigs in Checked Bags

FAA, DOT say they're a fire hazard

(Newser) - The DOT Monday announced what NJ.com calls an "air safety twist": letting airline passengers carry their e-cigarettes into the cabin in their carry-on bags or on their person, but banning the devices in checked luggage. The agency's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, in conjunction with the...

Changed Tune: Guitars Now OK as Carry-Ons

Small instruments to be treated as any suitcase aboard US airlines

(Newser) - In technical terms, Section 403 of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2012 is now in full effect. What that means for travelers: As of Dec. 30, 2014, small musical instruments now qualify as a "carry-on" on any US airline. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch shares the American Federation of Musicians'...

Feds Fine Airline $500K for Crash Response—a First

Asiana accused of leaving families in the lurch

(Newser) - Asiana Airlines has been penalized $500,000 for failing to assist family members of passengers on a flight that crashed last year at San Francisco airport. The fine announced by the US Department of Transportation was a first: No airline has broken US laws that require prompt and generous assistance...

FCC Chair Doesn't Want Phones in Air Either, But...

'...we are not the Federal Courtesy Commission' he explains

(Newser) - A bit of advice for the Federal Communications Commission: Nobody seems to want you to lift your ban on in-flight cell phone use. The Department of Transportation is firmly against the move, as are airlines, flight attendants, and, according to polls, the majority of passengers, the Wall Street Journal finds....

Obama to Name Charlotte Mayor DOT Secretary

First minority pick among second-term appointees

(Newser) - Charlotte mayor Anthony Foxx—an up-and-coming Democrat who grabbed attention as host of last year's Democratic National Convention—will be President Obama's pick to replace Ray LaHood as Transportation secretary, reports Politico , citing White House sources. Foxx would be Obama's first minority pick among second-term appointees, adds...

Ray LaHood Leaving Obama Administration

Transportation secretary the latest Cabinet member to depart

(Newser) - Yet another Obama Cabinet member is exiting stage left. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood tells the AP that he intends to step down as soon as a successor can be confirmed. The former Illinois congressman was the last remaining Republican in Obama's administration, though Defense Department nominee Chuck Hagel would...

Feds Shut Down 26 Chinatown Bus Lines

Don't worry: Fung Wah and Lucky Star are OK

(Newser) - They're cheap, they're convenient, and according to the federal government, many Chinatown buses were also death traps. Authorities cracked down hard on Chinatown bus operators yesterday, shutting down 26 companies that they said were part of an "unscrupulous" network of bus operators that flouted federal rules, the...

Feds Demand System to Ensure Brakes Work

Brake override proposal a response to Toyota, Lexus crashes

(Newser) - Are you terrified of your car suddenly and uncontrollably accelerating, Toyota-style ? Well, federal regulators are at last moving to put your mind at ease. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has put forward a proposal to require all new vehicles to include a brake override system , the LA Times...

Passenger With E-Cig Kicked Off Flight

Does it violate 'no-smoking' rules? Continental thinks so

(Newser) - A flight out of Portland had to return to the airport yesterday after a man started puffing on an e-cigarette shortly after takeoff and refused to stop. He was escorted off the plane at Portland International Airport and may face federal charges, reports OregonLive.com . (It's not clear what...

DOT Rules Would Limit Car Gadget Use

Agency pushes voice-command systems over 'visual-manual' ones

(Newser) - The Department of Transportation has issued its first draft guidelines to deal with distracted driving, and they ban a lot more than just sending text messages. The guidelines recommend that automakers limit cars' "infotainment" systems so that while a car is in motion, all tasks can be performed with...

Angry Over Regulation, Spirit Institutes Snarky Fee

'Unintended Consequence' fee intended to chide transportation department

(Newser) - Spirit Airlines is angry over a new Department of Transportation rule—and it's making sure customers know it, by slapping a $2 "Department of Transportation Unintended Consequence Fee" on all tickets. The new rule, which went into effect last week, requires airlines to give customers a full refund,...

Feds to Airlines: Stop Hiding Ticket Fees, Taxes

Carriers must advertise full price starting next month

(Newser) - Airlines will soon be forced to advertise the full price of tickets—including government taxes and fees—instead of a stripped-down price with an asterisk. The rule scheduled to go into effect in late January is designed to keep prospective fliers from getting a nasty surprise several steps into the...

Federal Aviation Administration Chief Randy Babbitt Is Resigning After His DWI Arrest
FAA Chief Resigns
After DWI Arrest

FAA Chief Resigns After DWI Arrest

Randy Babbitt will step down after weekend misfire

(Newser) - It was probably just a bit much to overcome: FAA chief Randy Babbitt is resigning in the wake of his weekend DWI arrest, reports AP . Babbitt initially went on leave after police pulled him over in northern Virginia for driving on the wrong side of the road, but now he'...

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