DALLAS (AP) - Southwest Airlines will pay $2.8 million to settle a lawsuit by the federal government over maintenance on its planes.

DALLAS (AP) Southwest Airlines will pay $2.8 million to settle a lawsuit by the federal government over maintenance on its planes.

The Justice Department said Monday that Southwest also agreed to pay up to $5.5 million in additional penalties if it fails to improve oversight of contractors it hires to perform maintenance work.

The Federal Aviation Administration sued Southwest last year in federal district court in Seattle.

FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said the settlement give Southwest strong incentives to correct problems discovered by FAA investigators.

Southwest says safety is the top priority and it is committed to complying with safety regulations.