Chinese pilot banned from flying after passenger’s cockpit photos go viral online

PHOTO: Courtesy

BY PRUDENCE WANZA- A Chinese pilot has been banned from flying for allowing a female passenger in the cockpit.

The photo is said to have been taken in January on an Air Guilin flight from Guilin city to Yangzhou city but was widely shared this week hence the action by the airline.

The photo shows a woman posing in the cockpit making a V sign with her fingers and refreshments next to her with a caption: “Thanks to the captain. So happy.”  The airline termed it as violation of safety regulations.

A report by BBC indicates that, the incident took place on 4th January on flight GT1011 from Guilin city to Yangzhou city but was brought to the airlines attention after screenshots of the alleged passengers post started being shared widely.

The report further states that the woman is rumored to be a flight attendant in training at Guilin University. Air Guilin is also said to not have specified whether the photo was taken mid-flight though Chinese pilots and analysts said the photo appeared to have been taken during the flight.

The pilot whose name has not been disclosed has been banned from flying for life, though it is unclear if he was fired from all roles by the airline.

He violated regulations by allowing irrelevant personnel into the cockpit,” said Air Guilin in a statement.

According to the Civil Aviation Administration of China, passengers are not allowed to enter the cockpit without special approval or under “necessary” circumstances.

Staff members involved in the incident have also been “suspended indefinitely” while further investigations are conducted.

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“Passengers’ safety is always Air Guilin’s priority. We take a zero-tolerance approach against any inappropriate and unprofessional behavior that might risk the aviation safety,” the Chinese carrier said.

Last year, Chinese carrier Donghai Airlines suspended a pilot for six months and revoked his qualifications as a flight instructor after he allowed his wife to go inside the cockpit.