In a 111-page report released Thursday, GAO said U.S. airlines were at least 24 percent more likely to cancel a flight in 2010 after the three-hour time limit went into effect. The rule took effect in April 2010.
GAO acknowledged “the delay rule this has reduced the hardship of long on-board delays for some passengers,” but that their analysis “suggests the rule is also correlated with a greater likelihood of flight cancellations.”
Flights that remained on the tarmac for more than an hour were 31 percent more likely to be cancelled, GAO said.
U.S. airlines are required to allow passengers a chance to leave stuck planes or face fines of up to $27,500 per customer, according to the Transportation Department’s rules.
Click here to read the full GAO report.