Ethiopian pilots fall asleep and forget to land aircraft

Two pilots fell asleep and passed through the airport where they were supposed to have landed during a flight from Khartoum, Sudan, to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, according to information from the commercial aviation news website Aviation Herald.

The Boeing-737-800, operated by Ethiopian Airlines, was flying on autopilot at an altitude of 11,000 meters on Monday, 15, when it passed through Addis Ababa International Airport. Despite several attempts, air traffic control was unable to contact the crew. However, an alarm was triggered after the autopilot was turned off. Then the plane started to descend and landed safely in 25 minutes.

“We have received a report indicating that Ethiopian flight number ET343 en route from Khartoum to Addis Ababa temporarily lost communication with Addis Ababa Air Traffic Control on August 15, 2022,” Ethiopian Airlines said in a statement on Friday. 19th. “The flight landed safely after communication was re-established. The crew in question has been removed from the operation pending further investigation.”

According to the company, “appropriate corrective actions will be taken based on the outcome of the investigation.”

In a post on social media, aviation analyst Alex Macheras shared his shock over the ET343 flight and said it was a “deeply worrying incident”, citing the possibility that the case was the result of pilot exhaustion.

“Pilot fatigue is nothing new and continues to pose one of the most significant threats to air safety – internationally,” he wrote.

This week’s case comes just months after pilots for Southwest Airlines and Delta Air Lines warned airline executives of increasing pilot exhaustion.

“Fatigue, both acute and cumulative, has become Southwest Airlines’ primary safety threat,” the Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA) said in a letter published in April.

In the document, they warn about the reasons for the increase in pilot exhaustion, among them the growing demand for air travel as the sector begins to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic, in addition to the chaos caused by the cancellation of trips due to the wave. severe heat in the northern hemisphere.

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