Transportation Division probe will take a look at whether or not Southwest overscheduled flights

The Transportation Division is within the preliminary phases of an investigation into Southwest Airways’ journey meltdown, and it’ll take a look at whether or not executives overscheduled flights, a spokesperson stated.

Southwest canceled 1000’s of flights, slashing round two-thirds of its every day schedule, for days because it struggled to get well from winter climate at the same time as different airways managed. Passengers had been stranded and scrambled to seek out different methods to get house.

The Transportation Division is “probing whether or not Southwest executives engaged in unrealistic scheduling of flights which underneath federal legislation is taken into account an unfair and misleading observe,” the spokesperson stated.

Southwest stated in an announcement Wednesday that it was ready, however there was an enormous winter storm. It stated it is going to proceed to cooperate with all inquiries.

“Our vacation flight schedule was thoughtfully designed and provided to our Clients with the backing of a stable plan to function it, and with ample staffing,” Southwest stated. “Our programs and processes turned burdened whereas working to get well from a number of days of flight cancelations throughout 50 airports within the wake of an unprecedented storm.”

The Transportation Division stated it was additionally making certain Southwest was offering refunds and reimbursements to passengers.

“DOT will leverage the complete extent of its investigative and enforcement energy to make sure shoppers are protected and this course of will proceed to evolve because the Division learns extra,” the division spokesperson stated by e mail Wednesday.

The cancellations, which got here after the Christmas vacation, infuriated passengers. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg referred to as them unacceptable and stated his division would take a look at its scheduling system.

Southwest canceled an estimated 11,000 flights within the week after Christmas, and it has pinned the price of the fiasco at upward of $800 million.

Southwest has referred to as its efficiency unacceptable and apologized. CEO Bob Jordan stated this month that the corporate is budgeted to spend $1 billion on “investments, upgrades, and upkeep of our IT programs.”

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