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U.K. Judge hands JAL pilot 10 months imprisonment over heavy drinking before London-Tokyo flight

LONDON – A British court sentenced a Japanese airline med pilot to ten months in prison on Thursday under heavy…

A British court sentenced a Japanese airline med pilot to ten months in prison on Thursday under heavy drinking before the October flight.

Katsutoshi Jitsukawa, 42, has acknowledged the responsibility for drinking at a level that exceeds the country’s legal limit for flight crew.

Judge Phillip Matthews said, “The safety of all persons aboard the very long flight … was risked by your inebriation.”

“The prospect of taking control of this aircraft is too scary to consider. The potential impact for those on board if you did it was disastrous,” he added.

Pilot aircraft affected by alcohol are considered a serious crime in Britain. A British Airways pilot was sentenced to eight months in prison in August after he found himself having alcohol that exceeds the legal limit in his system.

In a statement issued after the ruling, Japan Airlines Co. deeply regretted Jitsukawa’s actions and the failure of the company to oversee him and said, “We will do thorough steps to prevent such a recurrence.”

Jitsukawa had been estimated to be part of the JL44 flight from London to Tokyo October 28, but was arrested by the British police to be about 1

0 times above legal limit.

According to Japan Airlines, Jitsukawa has said that he drank two bottles of wine and more than 1.8 liters of beer over six hours from 18:00 the night before his flight. He cheated on an alcohol test before the flight that was administered at the airline and briefly aboard the plane.

But a bus driver who transported the crew to the aircraft noticed the smell of alcohol and warned the airport’s security officers.

Jitsukawa used mouthwash before the arrival of police and told security officers that he had not drunk

. Respiratory and blood tests of the police confirmed that the alcohol content in his system exceeded the legal limit, by about tenfold and ninety, with his arrest delayed the flight by 69 minutes, leaving the airline to run the flight with two pilots instead of the planned three.

Recently, a series of problems have arisen in Japan, which draws airline crew members and aircraft disturbances as a result, calling on the government to consider implementing more stringent rules for alcohol consumption for flight crew members.

According to the current Japanese flight crew system, it is forbidden to drink within eight hours of starting work, but there is no law or legislation setting a legal limit for alcohol consumption.

UK transport safety legislation sets a legal limit for alcohol levels for aviation officials activities – including flight crews, cabin crews and air traffic controllers – as 20 milligrams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood, excluding licensed aviation technicians, according to the UK Civil Aviation Authority.

Violent criminals may be subjected to a sentence of imprisonment for up to two years and / or fines.

Many Japan Airlines Group entities have in the meantime followed their parent company to extend their alcohol bans for pilots to 24 hours prior to flights due to drinking incidents, company officials said on Thursday.

The measures are preliminary, and JAL and the five other group companies operating passenger aircraft will consider whether they will be permanent, they said. 659002] Japan Air Commuter Co., Japan Transocean Air Co. and Ryukyu Air Commuter Co. did not change their rules immediately after arrest, but apparently they noticed the need to introduce tougher actions after a JAC pilot was found Wednesday for delayed departure of domestic flight due to pre-flight drinking.

The remaining group company Hokkaido Air System Co. had an eight-hour ban, but it has also been extended to 24 hours.

Japan’s airline industry has been investigated following a series of drinking incidents at both JAL and the nation’s second major company, All Nippon Airways Co.

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