Published: Apr 29, 2010 10:57 AM EDT

A new rule to protect airline passengers goes into effect Thursday.

The new rule prohibits airlines in the U.S. from keeping you on the tarmac for longer than 3 hours.  After 2 hours they are required to provide food and water.

If the airlines break the rule, they face fines of up to $27,000 per passenger.  That could equate to more than $3 million per flight.