Police said SWA Pilot smelled of alcohol

Lequip

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PORT COLUMBUS INCIDENT
Travelers say they smelled alcohol, confronted pilot
Captain didn't fly; Southwest, FAA are investigating
Thursday, January 8, 2009 3:14 AM
By Kurt Ludlow and Andy Hirsch


WBNS-10TV


WBNS-10TV VIDEO


The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating an incident Tuesday at Port Columbus in which two passengers accused a Southwest Airlines pilot of having been drinking.
The Chicago-based captain, who was preparing to pilot Flight 3396 to Orlando, Fla., was replaced by another Southwest captain, said a spokesman for the airline, which also is reviewing the matter.
The accused captain, now on paid leave, isn't being identified because he wasn't arrested and no charges have been filed. The plane he was to pilot, a Boeing 737 capable of carrying more than 120 passengers, ended up departing on time Tuesday afternoon.
According to a report filed by the Columbus Regional Airport Authority police, Andy Maisner and business colleague Chan Mahon noticed the captain at a security checkpoint staffed by the Transportation Security Administration.
"As we went through security, we told the TSA guy, 'Hey, that pilot smells like he's reeking of alcohol. He ought to be checked out,' " Maisner told WBNS-10TV last night.
Maisner and Mahon, both California residents, followed the captain down Concourse A and become alarmed when they mistakenly thought he was heading to the gate where their flight was about to begin boarding.
"So we went up, and Chan said to the pilot, 'Hey, you just reek of alcohol, and if you've got a drinking problem, you shouldn't be flying this plane.'
"The guy just took off running. He didn't say, 'I haven't been drinking.' He just turned beet red and took off."
Airport police found the captain in a nearby restroom, where he'd traded his uniform jacket and cap for a "civilian" jacket, the report said.
While in the restroom, the captain apparently called the airline to report that he was sick, triggering his replacement on the Orlando-bound flight.
The police officers said the captain did smell of alcohol but didn't appear to be impaired. He told them that he had "partied hard" at his hotel the night before but that he hadn't been drinking that day, the report said.
Airline officials told police that the captain would be given a blood-alcohol test. No results were immediately available.
FAA regulations stipulate that no one can pilot an aircraft within eight hours of consuming alcohol or with a blood-alcohol content of 0.04 or higher.
It turned out that the plane Maisner and Mahon were about to board was adjacent to Flight 3396.
kurt.ludlow@10tv.com
andy.hirsch@10tv.com
 

RDG

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gripping info from the department of redundancy department.
 

NuGuy

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Heyas,

Fortunately for all invoved, this story has been scortched from the front page by other events.

Nu
 

Amish RakeFight

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I think the OP was just affirming the report that the police officer (independant of the pax account), indicated brewery breath on said pilot.
 
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