(AP) — With the busy holiday travel season upon us and disruptive behavior spiking on airplane flights, the Transportation Security Administration is issuing a stern warning to those who would behave disruptively or even violently in TSA lines in airports across the country.
Violence on planes has spiked in recent months, notably during the COVID-19 outbreak and subsequent mask mandates.
Thursday, a Delta Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C. was diverted to Oklahoma City after a passenger attacked a flight attendant and the air marshal who stepped in to intervene.
This year alone, the Federal Aviation Administration has tallied 5,553 unruly passenger reports. Of those, 3.998 were mask-related incidents reports.
The spike in airplane confrontations has prompted the Federal Aviation Administration to adopt a zero-tolerance policy toward disruptive passengers. In August, the agency proposed civil fines topping $1 million. In addition, many airlines are reportedly suspending alcohol service on flights.
Now, warning signs are going up at TSA airport checkpoints across the country reminding passengers that if you threaten, endanger or harm TSA agents during the screening process, you could face thousands of dollars in fines.