DGCA suspends 2 pilots, 2 cabin crew members for 3 years for failing pre-flight alcohol tests for second time
India’s Regulator Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Tuesday said that nine pilots and 32 cabin crew members failed their pre-flight alcohol tests between January 1 and April 30. “Of them, two pilots and two cabin-crew members have been suspended for a period of three years for being positive for the second time,” DGCA said in a statement. The remaining seven pilots and 30 cabin crew members were suspended for three months as they tested BA (Breath Analyzer) positive for the first time, it added.
The DGCA stated last month that airlines must ensure that 50 percent of their cockpit and cabin crew members are subjected to pre-flight alcohol tests on a daily basis. Before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, all crew members were required to undergo pre-flight alcohol tests. When the pandemic struck, the tests were suspended for a couple of months. Subsequently, the tests were resumed but for only a small percentage of crew members.
“During the period of four months commencing from January 1, the DGCA has carried out 48 enforcement actions for violations of various requirements of the regulation regarding testing of the crew for the consumption of alcohol,” the aviation regulator said.
Apart from the action against the 41 crew members (nine pilots and 32 cabin crew members), the DGCA has also acted against seven crew members for “missing Breath Analyzer tests or not furnishing the declaration”. India resumed full scheduled international flights on March 27 after two years of Covid-induced suspension. The country resumed full scheduled domestic flights on October 18 last year.
India is facing a shortage of flights after major airlines like Jet Airways and Kingfisher Airlines shut shop due to bankruptcy problems. After a new management takeover, Jet Airways is expected to fly by October.
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