The number of pilots and cabin crew found drunk while reporting for work at airports has doubled in the past one year,according to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) data.
DGCA officials said not only pilots,this year there has been a spurt in the number of cabin crew who failed to clear the alcohol test. In all 65 cabin crew were grounded,of them 37 were men and 28 were women.
Till June last year,43 crew members and pilots tested positive for alcohol,this year the figure has already shot up to 83. The licences of 19 pilots caught drunk this year have been suspended for three months.
The DGCA had recently withdrawn the use of Alco Sensor-III for pre-flight medical examination of the crew and pilots as it was found to be ineffective. Since Christmas last year,new breath-analyser kits were introduced.
We introduced more advanced breath analyser kits and the number of detection increased after that. The punishment for the first offence is suspension of licence for three months and the second offence is suspension for five years, said DGCA chief Bharat Bhushan.