For the first time, the DOT is reporting on tarmac delays of three hours or longer in its monthly airline performance report. In the October report, issued today, the DOT identified 50 flights that sat on airport tarmac for three hours or more, out of 554,325 flights total.
That's a pretty miniscule number. But travel analyst Terry Trippler points out in his video blog that it doesn't mean much until we have a few months on record for comparisons. He also correctly states that Kate Hanni of the Coalition for an Airline Passengers Bill of Rights deserves a lot of credit for pushing the DOT to include this data.
Of the 50 tarmac delays reported, 24 of them were on regional carrier ExpressJet, and 12 were on Continental. The rest were spread around the remaining carriers.