Whew! Play if you want to, but the Federal Aviation Administration is letting passengers know it is NOT the one and not wearing your mask while flying these days could run you a few racks!
The agency reports it has recently fined nine passengers up to $20,000 each for refusing to wear a mask under its strict “zero tolerance” policy, according to the Daily Mail.
Despite trying to save money using a budget airline, a Frontier Airlines passenger traveling from Nashville, Tennessee to Orlando, Florida last December took the biggest hit with a fine of $21,500, according to the FAA.
The man drank his own alcohol onboard, which is against FAA rules, and he argued with a flight attendant and nearby passengers about the mask policy.
“The flight attendant issued the passenger a ‘red card’ for failing to comply with the face mask instructions, but he continued to argue with nearby passengers, ultimately striking the passenger next to him on the head,” the agency said in a news release.
The man was reseated and met with law enforcement at the gate upon arrival in Florida.
About 76 percent of the nearly 3,300 reports of unruly passenger behavior since January 1 have been related to the use of face masks.
The FAA does not release the names of passengers who have been fined. Such passengers are entitled to request a lower penalty, a meeting with the FAA or a hearing with an administrative law judge.
Passengers can also show they are otherwise unable to pay the fine.
In another incident that happened in late February, the FAA says a man traveling from Utah to Arizona on Allegiant Airlines refused to comply after a flight attendant instructed him to wear his face mask over his nose and mouth seven different times.
At the end of the flight, the man approached the stewardess from behind and touched her, the FAA claims. His behavior “intimidated” the attendant and made her “cry”’ according to the FAA.
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