Air Allegiant's "60 minutes" report released after seven months

Darnell Taylor
April 17, 2018

During Sunday's episode of 60 Minutes on CBS, numerous problems that have plagued low-priced airline Allegiant Air throughout the years were highlighted in a segment that has caused major waves in the airline industry.

One segment of the almost 30-minute piece says that from January 1, 2016 to October 31, 2017, Allegiant self-reported more than 100 "serious mechanical incidents, including mid-air engine failures, smoke and fumes in the cabin, rapid descents, flight control malfunctions, hydraulic leaks and aborted takeoffs".

It says Allegiant had more than 40 in-flight emergencies or unscheduled landings in 2016, and is nearly four times more likely to experience a mid-flight breakdown than Delta, United or American airlines. It contrasted the fact that the airline is one of the most profitable in the USA with the notion that "it may also be the most risky". "The City of Concord is not in a position to speak to the safety practices and operations of Allegiant or other carriers, other than all the airlines must meet FAA requirements".

In response to inquiries, the FAA provided a copy of a letter it sent to "60 Minutes" producers Michael Karzis and Vanessa Fica on April 11.

Within the report, the 60 Minutes corespondent interviewed a man by the name of John Goglia who is an expert witness who testifies on aviation issues.

"The traveling public deserves to know whether the FAA is conducting thorough safety oversight of Allegiant".

It took Steve Kroft seven months to complete a "60 minutes" report dealing with the investigation on the safety record of the air craft- Allegiant air.

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File - In this May 9, 2013, file photo, two Allegiant Air jets taxi at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas.

On its social media feed, Allegiant answered those who tweeted they were anxious by asking them to send a private message.

The CBS news magazine show reviewed the records after obtaining them through a Freedom of Information Act request.

The FAA has been fairly passive toward correcting Allegiant's difficulties, "60 Minutes" said. They received the corresponding documents from each of the airlines except Allegiant, which objected.

Allegiant Air (NASDAQ:ALGT) had its price target decreased by Morgan Stanley from $171.00 to $169.00 in a report issued on Thursday.

Allegiant's Vice President of Operations, Eric Gust, called the "60 Minutes" report "grossly misleading" in a statement he released Sunday night.

The CBS story is just the latest examination of the carrier in recent years that has found significantly higher safety problems aboard Allegiant flights as compared to its rivals. Our team members safely operate thousands of flights each week, which will transport more than 14 million passengers this year. Its statistics for deplaned passengers are almost identical.

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