Sunday, May 28, 2017

'Planes must land at nearest airport in case of pilot incapacitation'

New Delhi: Airlines must divert aircraft to the nearest airport in case one of the pilots on a flight are incapacitated. And carriers should tell their crew what meals to avoid 24 hours before operating a flight to reduce the chances of falling sick in the cockpit while flying.
The Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB) has made these recommendations to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) in its final investigation report in a case of pilot incapacitation on Jet Airways' Bangkok-Delhi flight of May 7, 2015.
The commander of Boeing 737 fell ill 1.5 hours after take off. But the flight still continued its journey to Delhi with the co-pilot flying the plane (VT-JFA) by taking the help of another Jet Airways commander of an Airbus A-330 who happened to be on board. The flight (9W-63) with 121 passengers and six crew members had landed safely in Delhi after declaring May Day.
"After 1.5 hours of flight, the pilot-in-command (PIC) was served salad, soup and curd. (Fifteen minutes after having this) he (PIC) started feeling uneasy," the AAIB report submitted to DGCA now says. The aircraft was in Kolkata airspace at this time. A Jet A-330 commander who was in the passenger cabin was asked to move to the cockpit.
27/05/17 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India