Senator calls for investigation into possible airline price gouging after deadly derailment

By:  Spencer Allan Brooks
Fox Connecticut

HARTFORD — U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., is calling for an investigation into airlines in response to a new report that airlines increased prices after the deadly derailment of Amtrak 188 in Philadelphia.

Sen. Murphy is citing a report published by the New York Times last week that said “people seeking last-minute tickets were likely to find fares of thousands of dollars for flights that typically cost a few hundred.”

Sen. Chris MurphyMurphy is calling on the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the “alarming price spikes” to make sure travelers were not taken advantage of at a time when thousands were stranded throughout the northeast.

According to the Times, a Delta flight from LaGuardia to D.C. at 10:00 a.m. was listed for $2,309, but a noon flight was listed for only $554.

In a letter to the FTC and DOJ, Sen. Murphy writes:

This evidence, as well as anecdotal evidence from my constituents, raises troubling questions about possible market distortions at play. If this drastic and sudden increase in ticket prices is an effort to make money from desperate travelers impacted by this tragedy, you should fully exercise the enforcement powers vested in your agencies.