JetBlue passenger facing $14,500 fine after refusing to wear mask or stop drinking his own alcohol, FAA says
A jetBlue passenger is facing a $14,500 fine after allegedly disrupting a flight back in December during a dispute over his face mask and alcoholic beverages.
The civil penalty was proposed Friday by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration.
The FAA says the passenger, who was not identified, refused to keep his face mask on and wouldn’t stop drinking his own alcohol that he brought on the place, which is prohibited.
The flight was on Dec. 23 from John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York to the Dominican Republic.
The FAA says the passenger first crowded the traveler sitting next to him, spoke loudly and refused to wear his face mask. That’s when a flight attendant intervened and moved the other passenger to a different seat.
But the FAA alleges the man’s disruptive behavior continued. Despite warnings, the FAA says the passenger continued to take off his face mask and drink his own alcohol.
A flight attendant issued the passenger a "Notice to Cease Illegal and Objectionable Behavior," and the cabin crew notified the captain about his actions two separate times.
As a result, the captain declared an emergency and returned to JFK, where the plane landed 4,000 pounds overweight due to the amount of fuel onboard.
The passenger has 30 days after receiving the FAA’s enforcement letter to respond.
RELATED: Delta passenger facing $27,500 fine for assaulting flight attendant amid mask dispute, FAA says
A fine was handed down by the FAA just weeks ago after a similar situation on a Delta flight. The FAA alleged this passenger also refused to wear his mask, fasten his seat belt or put up his tray table for takeoff.
That passenger is facing a $27,500 fine.
This story was reported from Detroit.