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More Flight Delays, Cancellations and Complaints Rise for US Airlines

Discount carrier Spirit Airlines had the highest rate of complaints, followed by United

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    More Flight Delays, Cancellations and Complaints Rise for US Airlines
    Moazzam Ali Brohi/Getty Images
    File photo

    Canceled and delayed flights rose in April on the nation's leading airlines, and so did consumer complaints, according to figures released Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

    The rate of canceled flights nearly doubled to 1.6 percent in April compared to the same month in 2016. Delta Air Lines accounted for nearly half the cancellations — it was crippled for days by a one-day storm in Atlanta.

    About 78.5 percent of flights arrived within 14 minutes of schedule, down from the 84.5 percent on-time rate in April 2016, according to the latest figures available from the government.

    Hawaiian Airlines had the best on-time rate, at 88.8 percent, while Virgin America was last at 64.6 percent.

    Dog Delivers Basket of Water on Baseball Field

    [NATL] Dog Delivers Basket of Water on Baseball Field

    A viral video of minor league baseball dog delivering water at a Fort Wayne TinCaps game has surfaced on Twitter.

    Video of 'Jake the Diamond Dog' was posted as the golden retriever carried a basket filled with bottled water out to the umpire between innings taken at a recent game.

    The video was posted by Indiana news station WPTA's sports anchor Zach Groth.

    Jake delivers water to umpires on the field in a basket and reportedly makes an appearance at a variety of minor league baseball games and has done so for several years.

    (Published 44 minutes ago)

    Complaints rose 70 percent, although only a tiny fraction of the millions of travelers lodged a protest.

    April was also the month in which a passenger was dragged from a full United Express flight, igniting a debate over poor customer service on U.S. airlines.

    Consumers lodged 1,909 complaints with the Transportation Department, with 1,430 filed against U.S. airlines. Most consumers complain directly to the airline, but the carriers don't have to report those figures.

    More than one-third of complaints dealt with canceled or delayed flights or missed connections.

    Discount carrier Spirit Airlines had the highest rate of complaints, followed by United, which took a public-relations beating after video surfaced of airport officers roughly hauling a 69-year-old man off a United Express plane to make room for crew members flying to their next assignment.

    Southwest Airlines had the lowest complaint rate.

    Man Hit By Bus, Flung Across Sidewalk Walks Away

    [NATL] Man Hit By Bus, Flung Across Sidewalk Walks Away

    A bus in Reading, England, swerved around a corner and hit a pedestrian on June 24, sending the man sliding across the pavement. The man stood up and walked into the Purple Turtle pub without major injuries.

    (Published Wednesday, June 28, 2017)