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Pilots Flying Intoxicated

Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:09 am

I read recently in the news about a pilot who was removed from his plane at MSP for being intoxicated.

A while back someone told be that pilots flying under the influence is something of a common occurence and that the copilot often doesnt report it for a variety of reasons.

Out of curiosity, does anyone know if this is true, untrue, or have any statistics?
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RE: Pilots Flying Intoxicated

Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:51 am

I don't know whether or not it's common, but even if it was, nobody will talk about it publicly.
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RE: Pilots Flying Intoxicated

Sat Jan 05, 2013 4:16 am

It's a very delicate subject and a tough one to broach as nobody wants to be accusatory, but if it comes to light that the crew knew or had a hunch that someone had been drinking and didn't report it, they'll be in almost as much trouble as the one who was drinking. From personal experience though, I've never flown with anyone who overindulged on an overnight and was unfit for duty.
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RE: Pilots Flying Intoxicated

Sat Jan 05, 2013 4:21 am

I can honestly say that with three decades of flying, I have never seen it. I am not saying it doesn't exist, just that 99.99% of the aircrew (F/A's included) don't break the drinking and flying rule.

Either they are very skilled at hiding it, (not likely), or they take advantages of the facilities offered by the airline, (more likely). Like any disease, alcoholism is treated the same way. You are taken off the line, given full pay and benefits ... and you are cured.

Sadly, like cancer and heart disease, a cure sometimes is not possible. Those individuals are retired and not allowed to fly again.
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