In Mumbai: Air India pilot found tipsy can’t fly a plane for 3 years | mumbai news | Hindustan Times
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In Mumbai: Air India pilot found tipsy can’t fly a plane for 3 years

An Air India (AI) pilot, who tested positive for alcohol before operating a flight, will not be allowed to fly a plane for at least three years.

mumbai Updated: Oct 27, 2016 00:41 IST
Soubhik Mitra
air india pilot suspended
An AI spokesperson confirmed the pilot’s license was suspended for three years. (HT File Photo)

An Air India (AI) pilot, who tested positive for alcohol before operating a flight, will not be allowed to fly a plane for at least three years. The pilot assigned to operate a Birmingham-bound flight from Delhi faced the stern action because this was the second time he tested positive during a mandatory pre-flight breath check.

An AI spokesperson confirmed the pilot’s license was suspended for three years. “This is as good as being grounded for good,” said a retired Boeing captain pointing at the cumbersome process of keeping oneself flying-fit for such a long period.

On Tuesday, Jet Airways also benched a pilot for three months failing a similar breath check. The punishment wasn’t as grave because he was a first-time offender.

“The airline will take suitable action according to the prescribed guidelines for such situations and company policy. At Jet Airways, the safety and security of our guests and staff is of paramount importance.”

Steady rise in such cases has become a burning safety concern for the aviation regulator.

On October 20, HT had reported that 89 pilots had tested positive for liquor during such checks between January and June. This meant at least one pilot was caught reeking of alcohol every second day during the period. The data from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation in response to a query sent under the right to information (RTI) act also showed the menace has more than doubled to 186 in 2015 from 69 in 2011.