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FEWER FLIGHT DELAYS, MISHANDLED BAGS, NOTES MONTHLY CONSUMER REPORT

 FEWER FLIGHT DELAYS, MISHANDLED BAGS,
 NOTES MONTHLY CONSUMER REPORT
 WASHINGTON, March 5 /PRNewswire/ -- The nation's largest airlines recorded fewer flight delays, mishandled bags and consumer complaints in January than in the same period last year.
 In releasing its monthly Air Travel Consumer Report, the Department of Transportation also reported a significant decline in the number of passengers denied boarding, or bumped, in 1991.
 The 10 largest U.S. carriers posted an 81.4 percent on-time arrival rate in January, an improvement over both January 1991's 73.8 percent and last December's 80.0 percent. In compiling the data, flight delays caused by mechanical problems are not counted.
 The airline's mishandled baggage rate also improved in January, with 5.69 reports per 1,000 passengers compared to 7.97 in January 1991 and 6.31 last December.
 The department received 564 complaints against airlines from consumers in January, down from January 1991's total of 796 but more than December's 496.
 U.S. carriers registered 1.09 involuntary denied boardings per 10,000 passengers in 1991, compared to 1.59 in 1990. Involuntary denied boardings totaled 46,879 in 1991 compared to 67,004 in 1990.
 The department also announced that this month's report contains for the first time a new table listing more than 200 airports in alphabetical order with on-time arrival and departure percentages for each.
 The department reminded consumers who want on-time performance data for specific flights to call their airline ticket offices or their travel agents. Such information is available on the computerized reservation systems used by these agents.
 While providing a summary of flight data in its monthly report, the department also maintains a file covering more than 20,000 flights available for inspection in Room 4201 of the DOT headquarters building at 400 7th St., S.W., Washington. For those interested in obtaining all the flight information, computer tapes ($150 per tape reel) and a complete printout are available from DOT's Volpe National Transportation Systems Center in Cambridge, Mass.
 -0- 3/5/92
 /CONTACT: Bill Mosley of the U.S. Department of Transportation, 202-366-5571/ CO: U.S. Department of Transportation ST: District of Columbia IN: AIR SU:


MH -- DC025 -- 5465 03/05/92 12:55 EST
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Date:Mar 5, 1992
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