Thursday, 14 August 2014

Indian Plane ‘drops 5,000 feet’ As Pilots Dozed Off

India’s aviation watchdog has launched an inquiry after reports that a Jet Airways Boing 777 suddenly lost 5,000 feet over Turkey’s crowded skies. The pilot was said to be taking a “controlled nap” while his co-pilot was looking at her tablet computer.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), India’s aviation watchdog, first got to know about the incident Tuesday when it’s joint director general, Lalit Gupta, received an anonymous text about the uncontrolled decent, the Times of India reports.

The captain of the plane, en route from Mumbai to Brussels, was taking a controlled nap as per the rules on long flights. The co-pilot, who was supposed to be holding the fort in the cockpit, claimed she was busy on her electronic flight bag (EFB) – a tablet that has all aircraft documents loaded onto it.

Both pilots’ names were not given.

The co-pilot said that she didn’t realize the aircraft had dropped below its assigned level and it wasn’t until she received a call from a panicked air traffic controller that she woke up the captain, who brought the aircraft back to its assigned height.

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