Southwest Airlines will pay a fine of $7.5 million for flying planes that had missed critical safety checks. Under the agreement, the airline will have nearly two years to pay the fine in three installments of $2.5 million each. The total of the fine is $2.5 million less than government regulators initially ordered. The first installment is due in ten business days from the signing of the settlement agreement. Last year, the Federal Aviation Administration ordered Southwest to pay $10.2 million.
Had that remained the amount, it would have been the largest fine in the agency’s history. But the airline protested the fine and has been negotiating with the FAA for the past year, trying to reduce the amount. Federal investigations revealed that an FAA inspector had allowed the airline to keep flying dozens of planes overdue for maintenance. It appears Southwest came out pretty well on the fine considering the safety risks involved.
Source: Associated Press
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