Friday, June 16, 2023

Air India suspends the captain for six months and the first officer for one month in the "friend in the cockpit" case


Delhi, India: Two Air India pilots have been suspended for inviting a female passenger into the cockpit on a Delhi-Leh flight on June 3, 2023. The first officer has been suspended for a month, while the captain has been suspended for six months. The female friend who was invited to the flight deck is a pilot in the Indian Air Force; however, the rules say that no one other than a member of the crew can enter the cockpit, even if they are operating a critical high altitude sector like Leh.

After giving the pilots time to respond and issuing show cause, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) may also take action. The regulator will then decide what it will do about them after going through the same process.

This is the second time in just over three months that AI pilots have come under fire for inviting a female passenger into the flight deck while the aircraft was in operation. While flying from Dubai to Delhi on February 27, 2023, the pilots invited a friend into the cockpit.

The DGCA had fined Air India Rs 30 lakh for failing to act quickly, suspending the pilot-in-command's flying license for three months in this instance. Additionally, the regulator had instructed the airline to take "administrative action" against the friend-passenger who was traveling with the airline as staff on duty (SOD), such as "removing her from any managerial functions in the organization for a specified period."

The Leh case was expeditiously answered to DGCA by artificial intelligence. An AI spokesperson had previously stated about this topic: Air India has zero tolerance for deliberate violations of regulations and takes a just culture approach to all safety-related events. Infractions of this kind are dealt with seriously, and those who break the rules will face consequences.

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