Remember last year, when American Airlines grounded thousands of flights to catch up on safety inspections? The Federal Aviation Administration does, and according to reports, may be about to hit AA with a fine of as much as $20 million, which would be more than double the previous record safety fine of $7.5 million, which Southwest paid last year.
Reports put the potential fine in the $10 million to $20 million range, based on statements from unnamed government officials.
American has insisted that passengers weren’t in any danger, despite the fact that wiring problems in some of the planes may have created a fire risk, according to government officials reached by Associated Press.
Loose fastening led to wire damage in several dozen of American’s 290 MD-80s and, in at least a few cases, an electrical discharge that’s a potential fire threat, according to the government and industry officials. They asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly about the two-year investigation.
An AA spokesman told AP that the airline “found no evidence of any chaffing of wires in its inspection and reworking of the wire bundles.”