In a November commentary published in USA Today, Christopher Bidwell, senior vice president for the Airports Council International – North America lobby group, pointed to FAA data showing alcohol is a factor in only 6% of incidents. He called for extra vigilance at boarding gates and greater sharing of information to clamp down on unruly behavior.
The FAA last month proposed fining eight passengers more than $161,000 for alleged alcohol-related misbehavior, saying the rate of unruliness “remains too high.”
In an incident last week, a drunken passenger assaulted a flight attendant and injured a federal air marshal on a Delta flight, the Washington Post reported.
“These events are out of control, disrupting travel and putting everyone at risk,” Nelson said. “The freedom of flight comes with an agreement to follow the rules.”