Four in ten pilots fall asleep on duty

2012-11-20 15:15
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A recent survey conducted by the European Cockpit Association (ECA) has revealed that four in ten pilots fall asleep behind the controls of an aircraft while flying, raising concerns about air safety.

The Telegraph reports that a third of these pilots admitted waking up to find their co-pilot asleep as well.

More than half of the 6000 or so pilots interviewed said that tiredness had hampered their ability to fly, and 70 to 80 per cent of these said they would not file a fatigue report or declare they were unfit to fly, fearing the reaction from their employers.

This seems to suggest that it's quite a general problem that has gone largely unreported in the aviation industry.

Considering that pilots often have to deal with long duty and standby hours, night flights and disrupted schedules, the results hardly came as a surprise to the ECA

The body, which represents European pilots, is using the survey to bolster its campaign demanding safer flying time regulations. It says the final proposals from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) on Flight Time Limitations, published in October and designed to "harmonise" regulations across the EU, fail to protect passenger safety, and would only marginally improve the current situation.

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