At the start of this year, the Federal Aviation Administration announced a zero-tolerance policy against unruly passengers on flights. Since then, more than 400 cases have reached the level of being officially investigated. More than 3,000 incidents involving unruly passengers have been reported since Jan. 1.
What in the world is going on? The FAA says those 400 cases are three times the full-year average number of cases over the past decade. Certainly some of the increase in reported cases of bad behavior can be attributed to adopting a zero-tolerance policy, but there must be more to it.
Transportation Security Administration officials are worried enough about passenger behavior that they have resumed offering self-defense training to flight attendants and pilots.
It is a shame to think some passengers might have so little regard that they would be anything but polite and respectful on a flight, but if there really are people who become so unruly, flight attendants and pilots will be lining up for the training. Good for the TSA for doing something else to keep airline workers a little safer. It is a shame they needed to do it.