Jan. 4, 2023

Fines imposed by the Department of Transportation (DOT), including the FAA, for violating regulations have increased under the DOT’s annual adjustment to its civil penalty amounts.

The changes are mandated under the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustments Act Improvements Act of 2015, which requires government agencies to adjust civil penalties annually to preserve the effectiveness of the deterrent impact of such penalties.

The increases are derived by multiplying the penalty amount by the percentage change in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers from October 2022 through October 2023, which results in an approximately 3% increase for this period.

FAA hazardous materials rules violations will result in a penalty of $99,756 per violation, or as much as $232,762 for violations which result in death, serious illness, severe injury or substantial property destruction.

Civil penalties for aiming a laser pointer at an aircraft or at the flight path of an aircraft is $31,819.

The civil penalty for anyone who knowingly or recklessly operates an unmanned aircraft that interferes with law enforcement, emergency response or wildfire suppression is now $25,455.

Assaulting or threatening assault of a crewmember or other individual on an aircraft, or action that poses an imminent threat to the safety of the aircraft or individuals on board, will result in a $43,658 penalty.

This rule does not change previously assessed or enforced penalties.

“Civil penalties are adjusted annually so these increases are expected, but it is important for those in the aviation industry to be aware of potential fines for violations in 2024,” said Doug Carr, NBAA senior vice president of safety, security, sustainability and international affairs. “The recently published fines serve as a guide to the FAA in its enforcement of regulatory violations.”