WASHINGTON — Consumers filed 6,822 complaints with the government about U.S. airlines in August, nearly a sevenfold increase over the same month a year ago, the Transportation Department reported Friday.
Northwest Airlines had the worst record of the carriers examined, accounting for 1,585 of the complaints, while Continental Airlines ranked second with 1,343 and Eastern Airlines third with 913.
United Air Lines was fourth on the complaint list with 607, followed by Trans World Airlines with 606 and American Airlines with 398.
In August, 1986, the department registered 1,041 complaints against American carriers. Two months ago, in July, the total was 5,995.
The department attributed many of the problems to two factors: the airline mergers in recent months and their resulting problems, and the publicity being focused on airline problems.