DOT Firming Up Rules To Ban In-Flight Cellphone Use

DOT Firming Up Rules To Ban In-Flight Cellphone Use

It’s been more than eight months since the FCC first announced that it was considering lifting its ban on inflight cellphone use, which was followed almost immediately by the Dept. of Transportation saying it would think about enacting its own ban. Now comes news that the DOT is putting together new rules that would keep airplanes from being chatter-infested flying tubes of anger. [More]

It's a little hard to parse that spaghetti-like mess at the lower end of this graph, but it's quite easy to spot Spirit soaring high above the rest of the competition (Source: U.S. PIRG)

Spirit Airlines: The Most Complained-About Carrier In The U.S.

Yes, we’ve repeatedly made fun of delusional Spirit Airlines CEO Ben Baldanza for his claim that his company is the “most consumer-friendly” airline around, especially when it comes in dead-last in traveler opinion surveys and is the only U.S. carrier to make a recent list of the world’s worst airlines. And a new study confirms that Spirit’s passengers are several times more likely to complain than passengers on any other domestic carrier. [More]

(STL Okie)

NHTSA: New Vehicles Must Have Rearview Technology Starting May 2018

In four years, when you buy a new car or truck it’ll have a rearview camera as a standard feature. That’s because it’ll have to under a new rule just issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. [More]

The DOT Wants To Know: Should Cell Phone Calls Be Allowed On Planes?

The DOT Wants To Know: Should Cell Phone Calls Be Allowed On Planes?

Back in December when the Federal Communications Commission announced it would start investigating whether or not it’s a good idea to lift the ban on cell phone calls on planes — from a technological point of view — the Department of Transportation was all, “Hold on, we’re going to look into this too.” The DOT is now turning to the public to hear your thoughts. [More]

Bill To Ban In-Flight Wireless Voice Calls Moves Forward

Bill To Ban In-Flight Wireless Voice Calls Moves Forward

The battle for a maintaining relative amount peace and quiet on commercial airlines moved on to the next stage this afternoon after a Congressional committee voted to advance a piece of legislation that would ban the in-flight use of the “phone” part of your cellphones. [More]

Delta & Southwest Don’t Want To Listen To Passengers Gabbing On Phones For The Whole Flight

Delta & Southwest Don’t Want To Listen To Passengers Gabbing On Phones For The Whole Flight

Last week, the FCC said it was investigating whether to lift the ban on in-flight cellphone usage, which caused the Dept. of Transportation to effectively say, “Are you flippin’ crazy?” and announce that it would look into the need to set out its own guidelines to possibly stop planes from turning into flying tubes filled with obnoxious one-way conversations. In recent days, two of the nation’s largest carriers have joined their voices to the call for quiet on board. [More]

FCC Mulls Lifting Ban On In-Flight Phones But DOT May Stop You From Gabbing Away On Planes

FCC Mulls Lifting Ban On In-Flight Phones But DOT May Stop You From Gabbing Away On Planes

Yesterday, the FCC began the onerous process of considering whether to revise the decades-old rules regarding the use of wireless phones in flight. If the Commission eventually changes those rules, the relative quiet of the airplane cabin could eventually be filled with the dulcet tones of one-sided conversations like “I know! Seriously!” and “Uh-huh, uh-huh.” Since this seems like a disastrous idea to some people, the Dept. of Transportation is going to consider whether it should allow calls to take place at all. [More]

US Airways Fined $1.2 Million For Repeatedly Failing To Provide Proper Wheelchair Assistance

US Airways Fined $1.2 Million For Repeatedly Failing To Provide Proper Wheelchair Assistance

After reviewing hundreds of consumer complaints about US Airways’ lack of proper assistance for travelers in wheelchairs at two of the airline’s hub airports, the Dept. of Transportation has fined the carrier $1.2 million, a good chunk of which is to be used to improve systems for disabled passengers at these airports. [More]

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DOT Sued For Failing To Issue Rule On Rear Visibility In Cars

Everyone knows that the wheels of government don’t always turn quickly, but the folks at the Dept. of Transportation have been sitting on a Congressionally mandated new safety rule, one that could save an awful lot of lives and prevent even more injuries, for several years. In an effort to compel the DOT to finally act, several consumer groups and the parents of children who have died in auto accidents have sued the agency in a federal court. [More]

(afagen)

DOT Fines United Airlines For Delaying Refunds To 9,000 Passengers

Thanks to the merger with Continental, United Airlines is now the nation’s largest commercial carrier, but has the airline been able to keep up with its increased customer base? On Friday, the Dept. of Transportation fined United $350,000 because it failed to provide prompt refunds to thousands of customers in 2012. [More]

(The.Comedian)

DOT Fines Southwest For Promoting Deals But Not Actually Making Seats Available At Sale Prices

Is a sale a sale when only a few people can actually take advantage of the deal, or if no one at all can get a piece of the advertised deal action? Nope, said the Department of Transportation, which has fined Southwest Airlines $200,000 for touting a sale that didn’t provide enough actual seats — or in one case, any at all — at the bargain price it advertised. [More]

DOT Fines Delta $750,000 For Breaking Rules On Passenger-Bumping

DOT Fines Delta $750,000 For Breaking Rules On Passenger-Bumping

Delta isn’t great about letting passengers volunteer to be bumped off an oversold flight instead of just bumping them by force. The company just doesn’t have enough CEOs to go around and offer seats to people who need to get home. Don’t take our word for it: the U.S. Department of Transportation gave them a public reprimand and ordered the airline to pay a penalty of $750,000. [More]

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DOT Issued Record-Setting Number Of Violations To Airlines In 2012

Up until the very end of 2012, it looked like the Dept. of Transportation was only going to tie the record it set in 2011 for the number of fines handed out to airlines. But a pair of Dec. 31 violations pushed 2012 into a spot on top of the charts all on its own. [More]

Sorry Airlines, Court Says You Have To Tell The Truth About Airfares

Sorry Airlines, Court Says You Have To Tell The Truth About Airfares

In the last year or so, the U.S. Dept of Transportation has instituted a number of new rules — like requiring airlines to include all known taxes and fees in its advertised prices — aimed at adding more transparency to airfares. Some carriers, especially discount airlines that love to advertise a bottom-dollar price with oodles of fine print hiding the fact that it’s not such a good price, have challenged these changes. But today, a U.S. appeals court sided with federal regulators (and common sense). [More]

TripAdvisor Smacked With $80K Fine For Violating Fare Advertising Rule

TripAdvisor Smacked With $80K Fine For Violating Fare Advertising Rule

TripAdvisor has fallen afoul of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s rule about fare advertising, resulting in a fine of $80,000. The rule went into effect in January, and stated that ticket agents and airlines must display fares as the total of what a consumer will pay, taxes and fees included. [More]

New DOT App Gives You Potentially Scary Info About The Bus You're Riding

New DOT App Gives You Potentially Scary Info About The Bus You're Riding

When you take your seat on that bus to visit grandma in Atlantic City, you’re putting your life in the hands of a driver you don’t know and a bus company whose safety record you may not be familiar with. But a new app from the Dept. of Transportation aims to put some of that info in the palm of your hand… if you own an iPhone, that is. [More]

Spirit Airlines Sued Over $2 "Unintended Consequences Fee"

Spirit Airlines Sued Over $2 "Unintended Consequences Fee"

Back in February, a new regulation kicked in that allows fliers to change their flights without penalty within the first 24 hours after booking. The folks at Spirit Airlines responded by tacking on a $2 “Dept. of Transportation Unintended Consequences Fee,” which they said was to cover the added costs resulting from the new rule. But a woman in Illinois says it’s just plain fraud. [More]

Spirit Adds $2 "Dept. Of Transportation Unintended Consequences Fee"

Fresh off fighting laws that require truth in advertising, Spirit Airlines, which hilariously dubbed itself the “most consumer-friendly airline,” is now taking a stand against another government regulation — one that requires airlines to allow passengers to change flights within 24 hours of booking without paying a penalty — by adding two dollars to everyone’s ticket. [More]