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Airlines will have to follow stricter requirements for reporting incidents involving animals — including pet deaths — beginning next year. The U.S. Department of Transportation finalized Wednesday its new rule for animal incident reports, expanding the requirements to more airlines and to more animals. There were 42 airline incidents involving pets including 21 pet deaths in 2013, and 58 incidents with 30 deaths in 2012. The new rule is likely to increase those numbers, but also put them into context. Many airlines are already required to file animal incident reports; the new rule will require an additional 12 carriers that offer scheduled passenger service and have at least one plane with more than 60 seats to comply. Each carrier will have to file a report in December with the total number of animals transported, with how many were lost, injured or died during transport. The new rule will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2015.

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