Drunk pi­lots fuel alarm in Ja­pan

Calgary Herald - - TRAVEL -

Ja­pan’s trans­port min­istry is urg­ing its do­mes­tic air­lines to curb al­co­hol abuse by crews af­ter a pi­lot was de­tained in Lon­don with a blood-al­co­hol read­ing that was more than 10 times the le­gal limit. The JAL pi­lot was held by Bri­tish po­lice at Heathrow Air­port be­fore board­ing a flight af­ter a test showed 0.93 mil­ligrams of al­co­hol per litre of breath, the Jiji news agency said. He had re­port­edly drunk two bot­tles of wine and roughly two litres of beer at a ho­tel the day be­fore. Reg­u­la­tors in Tokyo are un­der pres­sure to en­sure air­lines com­ply with drink­ing rules af­ter sev­eral sim­i­lar cases in­volv­ing Ja­panese air­line pi­lots. Such in­ci­dents “cause de­lays (to flights) and bother pas­sen­gers,” a min­istry of­fi­cial said. Last month, a pi­lot with ANA Wings Co. called in sick af­ter drink­ing beer and whisky at a restau­rant the day be­fore he was due to fly, lead­ing to sev­eral flight de­lays. In all, Ja­panese air­lines re­ported 15 cases of flight de­lays traced to booze con­sump­tion by pi­lots in fis­cal 2017, and six so far in fis­cal 2018, the min­istry said.

ITSUO INOUYE/THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Ja­panese reg­u­la­tors are un­der pres­sure to en­sure its air­lines — in­clud­ing Ja­pan Air­lines (JAL) — are com­ply­ing with new drink­ing rules fol­low­ing a se­ries of al­co­hol abuse in­ci­dents.

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