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Wed, Aug 08, 2012

Qantas Removes Pilot From Flight Duty In Alcohol Incident

Is Investigating A Female Pilot Thought To Be Drinking Prior To A Flight

Qantas is investigating an incident which took place last week in which a pilot was removed from the cockpit of a B767 just before takeoff because she had failed an alcohol test.

Through a spokesperson, the airline would only confirm that the captain was "withheld from service for administrative reasons," according to a report in the London Telegraph. They would not make further comment on an ongoing investigation.

The flight crew alerted flight operations about their suspicion that the captain had been drinking as the flight was taxiing to the runway, according to a story appearing in the Sydney Morning Herald. The plane was recalled to the gate, and a replacement captain was placed aboard the aircraft for the flight.

The Australian Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) said that the airline confirmed that the captain had tested positive for alcohol. The pilot is suspended until the investigation is completed. CASA also administers random alcohol tests to Australian pilots, and spokesman Peter Gibson said that of the 51,000 tests conducted over the past three years, only 45 pilots have tested positive for alcohol.

FMI: www.casa.gov.au

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