The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) says they have recorded nearly 100 reports of unruly passenger behavior on flights and at airports in the past week alone.
This follows on the heels of a mass return to flying by the general public as Pandemic restrictions are loosening world-wide.
2,605 Unruly Flyer Reports are Mask Related
The FAA reports that 2,605 reports of unruly behavior are due to non-compliance issues with the federal mask mandate that are still in place for airports, commercial air flights and other public transit.
This represents over two-thirds of all incidents reported in 2021, as the total number of reports is 3,509.
Investigations in to Unruly Flight Behavior Have Tripled Since 2019
Of all the reports that have been reported by the FAA, there have been 581 actual investigations initiated in 2021. That's triple the amount than in 2019, with which there were 146.
It's important to note that there were 183 investigations in 2020, which should be considered an alarming number since actual flying numbers were down 90 percent or more in most markets.
Fines and Jail Could be the Result of Unruly behavior at Airports and On Planes
The FAA States: Under federal law, no passenger may “assault, threaten, intimidate, or interfere with a crew member in the performance of the crew member's duties aboard an aircraft being operated,” and the FAA may levy fines of up to $37,000 per violation in unruly passenger cases.
There can also be criminal charges.
From January through just February of 2021 there were fines proposed against 8 flyers for various incidents on airplanes.
The airlines and the FAA have grown weary of the alarming trend of passenger violence. Some carriers have stopped serving alcohol as a result.
There are also growing calls to permanently ban alcohol from commercial flights.