CORRECTED-Asiana fined $500,000 for not aiding families after July crash

Tue Feb 25, 2014 3:48pm EST

(Corrects spelling of airline in first paragraph)

Feb 25 (Reuters) - The U.S. Department of Transportation announced on Tuesday it had fined Asiana Airlines $500,000 for violating federal law by failing to assist family members of passengers on a flight that crashed at a San Francisco airport in July.

"In the very rare event of a crash, airlines have a responsibility to provide their full support to help passengers and their families by following all the elements of their family assistance plans," U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement.

For about one day following the crash, Asiana failed to widely publicize a telephone number for family members of those onboard, and the only number generally available to the public that family members could call was Asiana's toll-free reservations line, the department said. (Reporting by Eric Beech)

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