Travelers expected in large numbers over the holiday weekend



(The Center Square) – If you plan on hitting the roads or skies over the Labor Day weekend, expect some company.

The Federal Aviation Administration predicts that this will be the third busiest holiday weekend of the year so far.

The Transportation Security Administration said it expects an 11% increase in passengers this Labor Day weekend compared to last year. The agency projects its busiest day to be Friday, Sept 1.

Speaking at O’Hare International Airport Friday, U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said his agency is always working to make flying a pleasant experience.

“We have begun work on a series of new rules that would require airlines to get rid of junk fees for things like being seated next to your kids, and for the first time in history, to require that airlines compensate passengers when the airline causes a major delay or cancellation,” said Buttigieg.

The U.S. Department of Transportation said Monday it is fining American Airlines $4.1 million for unlawfully keeping passengers stuck in planes on the tarmac for lengthy periods of time. It is the largest civil penalty ever issued for tarmac delay violations, according to the agency. Passengers are owed more than $2.5 billion in refunds related to the delays.

Illinois roads are expected to be busy as well. Illinois Department of Transportation spokesman Paul Wappel said police will be out in force patrolling the highways.

“We want to remind motorists to drive sober or you are going to get pulled over,” Wappel said to state media IOCI. “There is a special Labor Day campaign that is going on and police will also be looking for anyone who is not buckled up.”

The Illinois Department of Transportation announced today that lanes that have been closed for construction will reopen, where possible, for the Labor Day holiday to minimize travel delays.

Non-emergency closures will be suspended from 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, to 11:59 p.m. Monday, Sept. 4.

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