Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is appealing to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg directly when it comes to taking action towards a major increase in flight delays.
In a letter to Buttigieg Tuesday, Sanders highlighted that it is “unacceptable that airline ticket prices have skyrocketed by 38% over the past year, while airline delays have increased by 50%. Sanders is calling for Buttigieg to take immediate action as a result.
“All over this country, airline passengers are growing increasingly frustrated by the massive increase in flight delays, cancellations, and outrageously high prices they are forced to pay for tickets, checked bags and other fees,” Sanders wrote.
“Thousands of flight disruptions have left passengers and crew members stranded at crowded airports from one end of the country to the other forcing them to miss weddings, funerals, and business meetings and ruining family vacations that have been planned for months in advance,” he added.
In the letter, Bernie also suggests that the airlines should be fined up to $27,500 per passenger for allowing domestic flights to sit on the tarmac for more than three hours.
Bernie believes that because taxpayer money went directly to help the airlines during the pandemic when the industry was struggling, more should be done to solve these current airline delay issues. The delays are causing major disruptions to Americans.
“During the pandemic, when air travel came to a near halt, U.S. taxpayers came to the rescue and gave $54 billion to the airline industry,” Sanders wrote.
“The top eight airlines alone received nearly $50 billion in taxpayer assistance from the federal government. Given all of the generous taxpayer support that has been provided to the airline industry, all of us have a responsibility to make sure that passengers and crew members are treated with respect, not contempt,” Sanders added.