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Nearly half of pilots fall asleep in the cockpit while flying

25 February 2012

Pilots fear that changes to working hours proposed by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) could lead to more flying accidents.

The British Airline Pilots Association (Balpa) told the Transport Select Committee that when it polled 500 members, 43 per cent said that they had fallen asleep during a flight.

The alarming admission came as union leaders warned MPs that even more passengers’ lives will be put at risk due to new European rules that could allow pilots to fly aircraft after 22 hours without sleep.

The Agency wants to ”harmonise” workload limits across all 27 member states, a move which Balpa says would increase the risk of fatigue, and should not be adopted by the UK.


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