Icelandair Fined $40,000 For Violating Lengthy Delay Rules

A consent order was issued by the Department of Transportation of the United States pertaining to violations by Icelandair Group — which does business as Icelandair — which failed to adhere to the assurance in its contingency plan for lengthy delays away from the gate to provide an adequate amount of food for passengers aboard an airplane that was delayed at Washington Dulles International Airport.

Icelandair Fined $40,000 For Violating Lengthy Delay Rules

The airplane — which operated as Icelandair flight 646 from Washington Dulles International Airport to Keflavik International Airport on Sunday, May 20, 2017 — experienced a delay of three hours and 26 minutes after pushing back from the gate at 2:42 in the afternoon but prior to taking off for Iceland at 6:01 in the evening.

The aircraft parked at a remote stand to address maintenance issues. At no time did Icelandair offer food to the passengers aboard the aircraft. The failure of the airline to provide adequate food no later than two hours after the aircraft left the gate — without any justification based on safety or security considerations — violated 14 CFR 259.4(b)(3), 14 CFR 259.4(b)(7), and 49 U.S.C. § 41712; and this consent order document directs Icelandair to cease and desist from committing future similar violations.

In order to avoid litigation, Icelandair has agreed to settle this matter; comply with the consent order, and pay an assessment of $40,000.00 in compromise of potential civil penalties otherwise due and payable.


Passengers should not have to suffer while seated aboard airplanes during delays without access to reasonably adequate items and facilities — such as food, climate, and the use of lavatories as three of many examples — and this incident is yet another of many examples why consumers need to continue to have legal protection against unfair business practices.

Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

2 thoughts on “Icelandair Fined $40,000 For Violating Lengthy Delay Rules”

  1. KathyW says:

    So the airline was fined $40K, but did the passengers receive any compensation? (Yeah, I could research this myself… but thought I’d ask anyhow.)


    1. Brian Cohen says:

      You know — that is a good question, KathyW

      …and I will bet that we both know the answer; but I will try to find out anyway…

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