LAS VEGAS (AP) — The low-cost carrier Allegiant Air is under fire following a “60 Minutes” investigation that is raising significant safety concerns.
Investigators with the news program found that between Jan. 1, 2016 and October 2017, the Las Vegas airline experienced more than 100 serious mechanical incidents, including aborted takeoffs, rapid descents, flight control malfunctions and midair engine failures.
Allegiant flew out of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport from 2012 to January of 2018. Allegiant still flies out of Allentown with direct flights to Florida.
More than a year’s worth of Federal Aviation Administration reports for Allegiant and seven other airlines show that the carrier was on average nearly three and a half times more likely to have a midair breakdown than Delta, United, American, Spirit, or JetBlue.
Early attempts to secure comment from Allegiant were unsuccessful Monday.
Shares of parent company Allegiant Travel Co. are plunging 13 percent before the opening bell.
When Allegiant decided to leave Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Carl Beardsley, executive director at the airport, said the decision by Allegiant Airlines to halt service from the airport at year’s end would open the door to new opportunities for local travelers.
Beardsley said at the time that it had been noted by aviation observers that Allegiant was changing its corporate strategy by placing a greater emphasis on larger markets.