Allegiant Airlines Under Fire After '60 Minutes' Investigation

Allegiant plane in the air

Shares of the budget airline were down sharply in pre-market trading

One of the main advantages of flying this airline is that it provides customers with a lower base fare and can take them to a variety of vacation destinations, including Las Vegas, parts of Florida, and Lake Tahoe.

Allegiant also disputes the "60 Minutes" report, saying it complies with all FAA requirements. Incidents included mid-air engine failures, smoke and fumes in the cabin, and rapid descents among other issues.

During his interview with "60 Minutes", Wells said Allegiant pilots have been discouraged from reporting safety issues and concerns.

Tim Davis, the president of Suzi Davis Travel in Bloomington, who books travel through Bloomington's Central Illinois Regional Airport, said he believes air travel and travel on Allegiant remains safe despite the report.

The CBS report updated reporting by the Tampa Bay Times, which said in 2015 that Allegiant planes were four more times than those of other US airlines to make an unplanned landing because of mechanical problems. "Thanks to these professionals, flights out of OGS are operated safely and efficiently using the newer Airbus A320 aircraft".

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Last year, Allegiant Air flight attendants picketed outside McCarran International Airport while on strike.

Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., asked the Transportation Department's inspector general to investigate FAA's handling of safety issues at the airline.

Allegiant and Phoenix-Mesa Gateway are under a five-year contract.

As airlines go, Allegiant is not a big player in Pittsburgh.

It's not the first time Allegiant has come under fire.

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According to 60 Minutes, 30% of Allegiant planes are older MD80s that were purchased second-hand from foreign airlines. "My family flies on Allegiant often, frequently with me as their Captain". He is said to be indulged in "lawsuit seeking money damage against the company". For example, the show's star interviewee, John Goglia, is not an un-biased commentator; he is a paid expert working for a former Allegiant pilot who has sued Allegiant.

"The force of it was so hard that it- it popped open the cockpit doors", Mercedes Weller told 60 Minutes' Steve Kroft.

The FAA is recognized around the world as the gold standard with regard to transportation safety, and as a result, the airline industry in the US has never been safer. "They must adhere to FAA rules and regulations and it appears they continue to do that". Not only do we expect our team members to adhere to all company procedures and policies-including safety procedures-but many positions are subject to statutory and regulatory obligations.

"It's inevitable that Allegiant's going to have a catastrophic failure that's going to get somebody hurt or killed", Riggs says.

You can see the full 60 Minutes report here. We have safely carried almost 90 million passengers since beginning operations in 2001.

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The "60 Minutes" report focused Allegiant's safety record and self-reported incidents, including problems with the McDonnell-Douglas MD-80, an older plane that has given the airline problems for years. None of those incidents led to enforcement action from the FAA. She added Allegiant is not an accredited BBB member.

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