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Passenger Protections

U.S. Department of Transportation Expands Airline Passenger Protections

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced new airline passenger protections that will require airlines to reimburse passengers for bag fees if their bags are lost, provide consumers involuntarily bumped from flights with greater compensation, expand the current ban on lengthy tarmac delays, and disclose hidden fees.  The rulemaking finalized today builds on passenger protections issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation in December 2009, which prohibited U.S. airlines operating domestic flights from permitting an aircraft to remain on the tarmac for more than three hours, with exceptions for safety, security and air traffic control related-reasons.  The rule also required U.S. airlines to provide basic services such as access to lavatories and water in the event of extended tarmac delays.