Airline pilots are known to be high fliers, professionally and socially, but the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) is not amused that many pilots have recently been found “high” on duty.
“During last one year, total number of 42 alcohol positive cases were detected," the DGCA said.
This information has been provided by the DGCA in response to an RTI query by Abhishek Shukla who sought details of pilots found drunk on duty.
The DGCA did not give any details of the pilots or the names of the airlines involved, except to say that action “is taken against the crew members”.
The DGCA did not specify whether the pilots were detected before they boarded the aircraft and whether they were prevented from operating a flight after alcohol was detected in their blood sample.
The nature of the action taken against the pilots was also not revealed. “The rules prescribe that there shall be no trace of the alcohol in the blood of the pilot and the cabin crew. Alcohol in the blood numbs the senses and dulls the reflexes ... The effect of alcohol is much more at high altitudes,” former DG Civil Aviation Kanu Gohain said.