A whole month after a serious safety violation involving three Jet Airways pilots operating a city-bound flight carrying
100 passengers, the directorate general of civil aviation (DGCA) finally began a probe on Wednesday.
The check pilot was taken off duty and will not be allowed to conduct any checks while the DGCA inquiry is pending. The commander and the co-pilot were also taken off flying duty only on Wednesday for letting the observer pilot touch navigational gear.
DGCA chief, Nasim Zaidi, said that Jet informed the DGCA about the incident only last week despite the incident having occurred on October 20.
DGCA has yet not sought an explanation from Jet for the delay in reporting the serious safety lapse. Even the regulator took a week to start the probe. “We have just begun our probe,” Zaidi said.
On October 20, the check-pilot, who was seated behind the on-duty pilots, pulled the plane’s ‘circuit breaker’ to test the pilots’ skills in dealing with such a situation. This caused complete failure of all navigational aides leading to an abnormal descent at a speed exceeding the permissible limits.
The airline did not explain why it took three weeks to report the incident.
The airline also dismissed the incident as a ‘minor system error’ as it did not lead to any adverse effect on the landing.
As per the standard operating procedure the airline is supposed to report safety related incidents daily to the DGCA.
Though the airline described the case as a ‘minor system degradation’, the DGCA has issued a list of safety directives for all airlines.
The regulator has warned all training pilots against use of prohibited in-flight emergency simulations.
It has also asked airlines to monitor every flight movement daily. And, the airlines have to submit data on flight movements in addition to passengers load factor, on-time performance and market share every month.