The Transportation Security Administration has doubled the fines for passengers who refuse to wear face masks on planes. The fine is now $250, and will increase to $500 if a passenger refuses three times.
The passenger removed from flight for not wearing mask is a recent news story that has caused controversy.
ONTARIO, ONTARIO (CBSLA) — The TSA stated this week that the punishment for refusing to wear a mask on public transportation, which includes aircraft, trains, and buses, would be doubled immediately.
“If you violate the rules, be prepared to pay and, by the way, show some respect,” President Biden said in his address, announcing the increased punishment.
READ MORE: A Firefighter Honors 9/11 Victims By Placing Thousands Of Flags Outside His Home
Onboard a Boeing Co. 737-800 operated by Avelo Airlines, passengers wear safety masks before of the airline’s first flight at Hollywood Burbank Airport (BUR) in Burbank, California, on Wednesday, April 28, 2024. In the United States, new money is pouring into low-cost airlines as they compete with big carriers to recoup from the pandemic’s historic drop in traffic. Bing Guan/Bloomberg via Getty Images is the photographer.
The federal mask requirement, which went into effect on February 2, will last until January 18, 2024. The increased fines will range from $500 to $1,000 for a first violation and $1,000 to $3,000 for a second offense, and will take effect on Friday.
TSA Administrator David Pekoske stated in a statement, “We appreciate the majority of passengers who voluntarily obey the requirement each day,” but “we believe this action essential to optimize the safeguards for individuals who utilize and operate inside the transportation system, and to limit COVID-19.”
“Listen, whatever it takes to defend myself and others, I’ll do it 100 percent,” stated airplane passenger Sherin Aref.
However, not everyone at Ontario International Airport agreed that wearing a mask while flying was a good idea.
“It’s all a load of nonsense,” traveler Joe Moya remarked, adding that he wears a mask simply to conform and get to his destination safely.
The higher penalties follow a spike in violent confrontations between customers and flight attendants over the federal mask requirement during the summer travel season. An assault on a flight attendant on a trip from Sacramento to San Diego resulted in the loss of two teeth and a bloodied face.
The TSA claims that the fines associated with the mask requirement are distinct from the civil penalties imposed by the FAA for individuals who participate in “unruly and hazardous conduct.”
The FAA has fined passengers over $1 million for disruptive conduct so far in 2024.
Kerry Allison, an airline passenger, said she doesn’t think the increased mask-related fee would make a difference since if someone is insane enough to want to take their mask off on the aircraft, they’ll probably do it anyhow.
Another airline passenger, Chuck Dawson, believes the TSA’s decision will only help to exacerbate the situation in the sky.
“I simply think it’s ridiculous.” In overall, I believe it is a lot of overkill. I believe it just serves to further divide the country and drive people insane,” Dawson added.
SERVICE ON A PORTION OF THE METRO C LINE HAS BEEN SUSPENDED SUNDAY AND SATURDAY
The disruptive passenger on plane 2024 is a problem that has been present for a while. The TSA has recently doubled the fines for passengers who refuse to wear face masks on planes.