The Department of Transportation (DOT) fined United Airlines $1.9 million for long tarmac delays.
The department says United allowed 20 domestic flights and five international flights to sit on the tarmac for a “lengthy period of time” without giving passengers the option to get off the plane.
The department stated that this is against a federal statute.
“Under the DOT tarmac delay rule, airlines operating aircraft with 30 or more passenger seats are prohibited from allowing their domestic flights to remain on the tarmac for more than three hours at U.S. airports and their international flights to remain on the tarmac for more than four hours at U.S. airports without giving passengers an opportunity to leave the plane,” a statement from the department says.
According to the department, this is the largest ever imposed DOT penalty.
In response to the fine, United said it is “committed to fully meeting all DOT rules and will continue identifying and implementing improvements in how we manage difficult operating conditions,” according to a statement obtained by NBC News.