The airline industry needs to wake up. This is in accordance to a former captain working for Flydubai, a UAE Dubai-based airline that just had a crash in Russia killing every passenger and crew onboard.
This captain is now a whistleblower and determined to prevent such air crashes in the future.
The accident involving a Flydubai plane was inevitable, a former Flydubai captain told RT on condition of anonymity. Speaking to RT in Doha, the former pilot said Flydubai’s top management was aware of the issue, but had done nothing to resolve it. “When I was still at the company, one of the last things I told management is that there would be an accident because of pilot fatigue,” he said.
The reason for fatigue is simple – pilots are being repeatedly overworked and not given enough time to sleep between flights.
The whistleblower provided documents showing that pilots, junior pilots in particular, are being assigned multiple flight shifts in a row. He argued that the crew often does not have enough time for sleep readjustment.
“Everybody at the company has these dangerous shifts from day flight to night flight, and then back to a day flight, and then back to a night flight, and it has definitely been a big issue for a long time.” He revealed that pilots are forced to work while exhausted, while saying he had been “worked to death” despite complaints.
“Fatigue a contributing factor to Flydubai’s Boeing crash in Rostov-on-Don.”
The former captain added he was sure that sleep deprivation had contributed to the Flydubai flight FZ981 crash in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don, which killed all 62 passengers and crew onboard.
“The way that [Flydubai] … builds the schedules does not account for circadian rhythm … they do not allow pilots to get the right amount of rest, or the proper rest before a flight, and that is exactly what both of these pilots were, the situation that they were in, for sure,” the pilot said.