An air hostess-turned-pilot of Air India was reportedly found tipsy during a pre-flight breathalyser test on Sunday. The co-pilot was to operate Bengaluru-Trivandrum (AI 583) when her preflight medical check showed she had reported working in an inebriated condition.
“One of our pilot’s breath analyser test was found to be positive on Sunday. She has been grounded,” a senior AI official said.
As per procedure, the pilot was subjected to two BA checks to confirm the finding. A pilot is grounded for three months, three years and forever after failing for the first, second and third time, respectively.
Those failing the breath analyser tests in post-flight checks get a year added to these groundings.
The DGCA had in 2016 directed registering of first information reports against two pilots and three cabin crew members of commercial airlines who were found tipsy after operating international routes in post-flight BA tests.
All pilots operating domestic flights have to undergo preflight alcohol tests to ensure only sober ones get inside cockpits and then safely fly. On international flights, pilots have to undergo post-flight checks as liquor is available on board those flights. India had, in fact, relaxed norms for tipsy flying by pilots some years back.
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