Complaints Decrease As Well; Five Flights Stranded On Ground
Over Four Hours
The nation's largest airlines had a
higher rate of on-time flights this past February than in either
February of last year or in January 2009, according to the Air
Travel Consumer Report released Thursday by the US Department of
According to information filed with the Bureau of Transportation
Statistics (BTS), the 19 carriers reporting on-time performance
recorded an overall on-time arrival rate of 82.6 percent in
February, an improvement over both February 2008's 68.6 percent and
January 2009's 77.0 percent.
The best performing airlines when it came to on-time arrival
rates were Hawaiian Airlines, 91.2 percent on-time; Southwest
Airlines, 88.3 percent; and Pinnacle Airlines, at 86.8 percent.
Lowest performing carriers in this regard were Alaska Airlines at
76.3 percent; Comair, 76.6 percent; and Continental Airlines, and
77.7 percent of flights arriving within 15 minutes of scheduled
The dubious honor of "most frequently late flight" in February
fell to Delta Air Lines Flight 2008, an MD-88 run from Savannah to
Atlanta -- which arrived late at the gate 94.12 percent of the
In February, the reporting carriers canceled 1.2 percent of
their scheduled domestic flights, a lower rate than both the 3.6
percent cancellation rate of February 2008 and the 2.3 percent rate
posted in January 2009. Passengers also reported fewer lost items
of luggage, and submitted fewer complaints.
Airlines filing on-time performance data reported .00009 percent
of their scheduled flights had tarmac delays of three hours or
more, down from .0002 percent in January. There were five flights
with tarmac delays of four hours or more in February, the most
egregious being a 259-minute delay for US Airways Flight 1165 from
Philadelphia to Charlotte, NC.
When it came to cancelled flights, American Airlines scrapped
the most in February, a full 2.2 percent of its schedule. Hawaiian
canceled the fewest, just 0.1 percent.