October 24, 2009 |
White-knuckle airline passengers who are already shaken by news that two Northwest Airline pilots are under investigation for overshooting a Minneapolis airport after possibly nodding off, won't want to hear this: Some pilots say cockpit catnaps happen. "Pilots on occasion do take controlled naps," said Barry Schiff, an aviation safety consultant and retired TWA pilot. "So this is not without precedent." Although the Federal Aviation Administration prohibits pilots from catching a few z's in the cockpit, several airline pilots say they are surprised such napping mishaps haven't happened more often, considering longer work schedules for pilots and advances in aviation that make planes easier to fly. The issue of cockpit siestas came under scrutiny this week after the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board announced they were looking into why Northwest Flight 188, from San Diego to Minneapolis, overshot its airport by 150 miles before turning around.
March 29, 2012 |
NEW YORK - Minutes after a JetBlue flight took off from New York for Las Vegas, the pilot began muttering things that didn't make sense to his co-pilot. He started talking about the need to "focus," lamented that "things just don't matter," and yelled at air traffic controllers to keep quiet. At some point, Capt. Clayton Osbon purportedly told his first officer that "we're not going to Las Vegas" and launched into a sermon. That set off a chain of events that culminated in a federal charge of interfering with a flight crew being filed against Osbon on Wednesday, a day after he was tackled by passengers at 35,000 feet and later carried off to a hospital.
February 1, 2001 |
The attorney general of Kenya has decided not to prosecute a mentally ill college student who nearly crashed a jumbo jet carrying 398 people in December, saying guilty intent could not be proved because Paul Mukoni, 27, was suffering from a mental illness when he burst into the cockpit and struggled with crew members. Doctors say Mukoni, a Kenyan, is suffering from acute paranoia.
May 26, 1988 |
A flight mechanic stole a private Learjet from Virginia on Wednesday and took it on a 1,600-mile joyride to Denver, then killed himself as authorities approached, officials said. Mike Christiansen, 24, was found dead at the controls moments after he was talked through a landing at Stapleton International Airport, authorities said. They said he was not a licensed pilot. They said they did not know why Christiansen, who was alone in the plane, killed himself or where he got the gun.
September 19, 1987 |
The Federal Aviation Administration criticized Delta Air Lines on Friday, saying an inspection disclosed widespread problems with crew coordination, poor communications and "lapses of discipline" in the cockpit. The FAA said in a report that Delta's "lack of clear-cut" management guidance to pilots was largely responsible for shortcomings found during a five-week review of the carrier's flight operations.
December 23, 1988 |
A mysterious "faint noise" abruptly ended the cockpit recording of the final moments of Pan Am Flight 103, with normal conversation among the crew before that indicating nothing was wrong up until the jumbo jet broke up in the sky and crashed, officials said today. "There is nothing in the conversations (of the flight crew) to indicate anything was wrong," said Paul McKie, Department of Transport spokesman. "There is a faint noise at the end which needs a bit more analysis.