Investigation opened after two airline pilots fall asleep for half an hour midflight

 March 11, 2024

Fox Business reported that an Indonesian airline is under investigation after two pilots risked disaster by falling asleep on a flight. 

According to the network, Indonesia's National Transportation Safety Committee recently put out a report concerning Batik Air flight BTK6723.

Pilot told co-pilot that he would be taking an hour-long nap

During a two-and-a-half-hour journey between South East Sulawesi and the Indonesian capital of Jakarta, both pilots reportedly fell asleep for nearly half an hour.

The craft carrying 159 passengers was under the command of a 32-year-old pilot, who at one point told his 28-year-old co-pilot that he would be taking a nap.

After sleeping for roughly an hour, the pilot is said to have briefly woken up and and offered his co-pilot the opportunity to take a nap of his own, something which the co-pilot refused to do.

Pilot awoke to find that plane "was not on the correct flight path"

The pilot then went back to sleep and awoke 28 minutes later to discover that his co-pilot had dozed off and the plane "was not on the correct flight path," a situation which he promptly rectified.

What's more, air traffic control officials had attempted to contact BTK6723, but the attempt went unanswered as both pilots were sleeping.

While being questioned, the co-pilot told investigators that he had found it difficult to get adequate sleep as he and his wife are having to care for twin babies.

Fox Business noted that Batik Air subsequently announced that both pilots were temporarily suspended following the incident while Indonesia's transportation ministry put out a statement saying it "strongly reprimands" the airline involved.

Jet bound for Japan loses wheel while taking off in San Francisco

Indonesia wasn't the only place to see an airline-related close call recently, as Fox Business also reported last week that a wheel fell of a plane following takeoff.

The incident took place at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and involved an United Airlines flight bound for Japan.

"United Flight 35 departing to Osaka lost a portion of landing gear tire during takeoff. The tire debris landed in an on-airport employee parking lot, causing damage to several vehicles," an airport official was quoted as saying.

The plane was able to safely land at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) where passengers were diverted to another flight.

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