Two United Airlines pilots arrested before flight from Scotland to U.S.

  
Via:  perrie-halpern  •  2 weeks ago  •  53 comments

Two United Airlines pilots arrested before flight from Scotland to U.S.
"We hold all of our employees to the highest standards and have a strict, no tolerance policy for alcohol," United Airlines said in a statement.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


By Phil McCausland


Two United Airlines pilots were arrested in Scotland on Saturday morning for drinking before taking control of the aircraft they were supposed to fly to the United States.

Scottish police confirmed to NBC News that they arrested two men, aged 61 and 45, under a British law that pertains to pilots carrying out their duties while under the influence of alcohol.

United Airlines ultimately had to cancel UA162, the 9 a.m. flight traveling from Glasgow to Newark, New Jersey.

The company said the safety of their passengers and crew take top priority.

"We hold all of our employees to the highest standards and have a strict, no tolerance policy for alcohol," United Airlines said.

"These pilots were immediately removed from service and we are fully cooperating with local authorities. At this time, we are working to get our customers back on their journey as soon as possible."

The two men remain in police custody pending a court appearance on Tuesday.

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Perrie Halpern R.A.
1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.    2 weeks ago

I wonder how many pilots make it off the ground? 

 
 
 
WallyW
1.1  WallyW  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1    2 weeks ago

The figures show the vast majority of commercial pilots take the responsibility of their jobs seriously and follow the rules. The ones that don't should be fired.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.1.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  WallyW @1.1    2 weeks ago

Wally,

I hope you are right. There was a time when it was common for pilots to get loaded before a flight, but I thought we got past that. I am comforted that they were caught, but it is still kind of scary.

 
 
 
SteevieGee
1.2  SteevieGee  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1    2 weeks ago

To be fair they have some really really good whisky in Scotland.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.2.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  SteevieGee @1.2    2 weeks ago

Indeed! LOL!

 
 
 
cjcold
1.3  cjcold  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1    2 weeks ago

As a pilot myself, I'm here to say one bad landing or one bad takeoff.....................

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
2  sandy-2021492    2 weeks ago

Great.  Another reason to hate flying.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  sandy-2021492 @2    2 weeks ago

Yeah, I am not a happy flyer either. Just add this to my list. 

 
 
 
Dean Moriarty
2.1.1  Dean Moriarty  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @2.1    2 weeks ago

I’m flying this afternoon from Northern Michigan to Denver and know statistically it is much safer than driving. It is also a heck of a lot more comfortable than being stuck in a car for 24 hours. For two hundred dollars more than a coach ticket I’m flying first class with express boarding, free drinks, a meal and free checked luggage. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.1.2  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Dean Moriarty @2.1.1    2 weeks ago

Dean,

My rational mind tells me you are right. My emotions tell me otherwise. 

Safe journeys! 

 
 
 
Enoch
3  Enoch    2 weeks ago

The only thing more troubling than seeing pilots getting into the cockpit drunk is noticing stickers on their valise for Andre Adoria, Hindenburg and Titanic while they are purchasing flight life insurance at a booth just before take off.

Enoch, Walking to Work  

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
3.1  sandy-2021492  replied to  Enoch @3    2 weeks ago

My last vacation, I flew into Durango, Colorado.  One of the flight attendants was joking about being scared during landing - the thermals made for a bumpy ride.

I've also flown out of Charleston, WV, where pilots are required to have special certification because it's such a difficult runway.  Miss the end, and you're over the side of the mountain.

I gotta start using easier airports.

 
 
 
WallyW
3.1.1  WallyW  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.1    2 weeks ago

Mountain flying is a whole new ballgame. Here's a busy day at Aspen.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
3.1.2  sandy-2021492  replied to  WallyW @3.1.1    2 weeks ago

My sister and I flew into Charleston, WV one night.  Our flight had departed Dulles early, trying to beat a storm, and we were warned that landing might be bumpy.  We beat the rain and lightning, but not the wind.  A bit scary when you know from seeing it in daylight just how small the margin of error is.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.3  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.1    2 weeks ago

Then if you come to NY, don't land at Laguardia airport. Another really short runway and you end up in the bay. Better to land at JFK. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.4  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  WallyW @3.1.1    2 weeks ago

Wally,

That is terrifying. 

 
 
 
WallyW
3.1.5  WallyW  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.1.4    2 weeks ago

Think that's bad, try Telluride

 
 
 
devangelical
3.1.6  devangelical  replied to  WallyW @3.1.1    2 weeks ago

made that landing dozens of times in the 70's when it was daylight only landings in Convair 580 turboprops. a DC3 on steroids. Is the barn roof with the bird flipping thru the rainbow painting still there?

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.7  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  devangelical @3.1.6    2 weeks ago

Hey never knew you were a pilot. Very cool! 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.8  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  WallyW @3.1.5    2 weeks ago

Wally,

You are making me not want to ski out west.. Yikes!

 
 
 
cjcold
3.1.9  cjcold  replied to  WallyW @3.1.1    2 weeks ago

Yep, Aspen has never been fun even with perfect conditions.

Jackson hole is another. They call it "hole" for a reason.

 
 
 
devangelical
3.1.10  devangelical  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.1.7    2 weeks ago

I'm not a pilot. I just worked for a small airline back in the 70's.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3.1.11  Trout Giggles  replied to  sandy-2021492 @3.1    2 weeks ago
Miss the end, and you're over the side of the mountain.

Pittsburgh seems like that. One time I was flying home from Alaska and that was the first time I noticed the airport was on top of a mountain. Our runway looked like if the pilot misjudged just one tiny thing, we would end up in the Mongahela River (or one of those damn rivers)

 
 
 
katrix
3.1.12  katrix  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.1.11    2 weeks ago

The worst ones for me were St. Maarten (that's the one where the plane comes in really low over the ocean - and straight ahead is a mountain. On takeoff you're flying at the mountain) and Key West (really short runway; the pilot warned us he was basically doing a controlled crash and to brace ourselves).

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3.1.13  Trout Giggles  replied to  katrix @3.1.12    2 weeks ago
the pilot warned us he was basically doing a controlled crash and to brace ourselves).

OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.2  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Enoch @3    2 weeks ago
noticing stickers on their valise for Andre Adoria, Hindenburg and Titanic while they are purchasing flight life insurance at a booth just before take off.

Never a good sign. But think, people got on board boats even upon seeing the Unsinkable Molly Brown. 

Perrie will walk to work with Enoch! 

 
 
 
Raven Wing
3.2.1  Raven Wing  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.2    2 weeks ago

I had to fly into Brownsville TX in 1976 on business. Having flown to many various airports around the country when I had my own business, I was used to comfortable take-offs and landings. However, when I boarded a small Branif airplane out of Houston I didn't know what was ahead of me. 

The flight went fairly smooth and I enjoyed the view. When we got into the approach to the Brownsville airport everyone started to brace themselves and I wondered why. 

As soon as the plane hit the runway the brakes were full on and the engines were in retro big time. I found out quick why the other passengers were bracing themselves for the landing. As I looked out the window I could see the runway way running out very quickly and I thought we were going to run off the end of the runway. But, the plane made a sudden turn to the right and headed down the other runway. I felt like I had been on a wild ride at the Dallas Fair!.

The take-off was even worse, as when we made the turn onto the runway the jets were cranked up full bore and the nose of the plane went straight up in the air and we were off the runway within seconds it seemed. I felt my stomach rubbing against my backbone, and I thought we were doing a rocket liftoff!

Then I understood why only had small planes were allowed to land at Brownsville airport at that time. The runway was much too short for anything larger.

Lucky I had just gone to the loo before we took off. jrSmiley_30_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Buzz of the Orient
4  Buzz of the Orient    2 weeks ago

I had a very good friend and client who absolutely refused to fly at all, but he did captain his 45 foot motor yacht.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
4.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Buzz of the Orient @4    2 weeks ago

I get sea sick, so I am short on options, LOL. 

 
 
 
devangelical
4.1.1  devangelical  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @4.1    2 weeks ago

have you tried walking across the water? after reading some other seeds, it might be worth a try.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
4.1.2  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  devangelical @4.1.1    2 weeks ago

I have a knack for that. Because cleanliness is right under godliness and I am very, very clean.

 
 
 
cjcold
4.1.3  cjcold  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @4.1.2    2 weeks ago

You could have gone all day without intriguing me like that.

 
 
 
Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom
5  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom    2 weeks ago

Federal regulations for both pilots and flight attendants state that crew members must stop drinking no later than 8 hours prior to check-in.  This doesn't mean that the crew can party their behinds off until exactly 8 hours before; it means that their blood alcohol levels must be well below the legal limit prior to walking down the jetway and taking control of the aircraft.  If the story is true, these guys were partying their behinds off.

On a related note, it's possible that I flew with a hell of a hang-over more than once.  I spear-headed the 'We Need Longer Layovers in Cancun' movement.  Did I say spear-headed?  I meant supported.  Did I say supported?  I meant...

On another related note, back in the day, United pilots were notorious for filming Continental flight crews that might have been breaking the FARs related to drinking.  Their actions were the result of a stupid pissing contest between the pilots of both airlines.  Even though the two airlines merged years ago, I guarantee the animosity is alive and well.   

   

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
5.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom @5    2 weeks ago

Well, Sister, if anyone would know about this, it would be you! Question, how do they know if what their blood alcohol level is?

And did you ever get your 'We Need Longer Layovers in Cancun' movement, off the ground (pun intended).

That's interesting about the two airlines crews. On some level, I guess it keeps them clean.

 
 
 
Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom
5.1.1  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @5.1    2 weeks ago
Question, how do they know if what their blood alcohol level is?

If behavior (and morning-after aroma), dictates, the alleged offenders will be escorted to the airport medical facility and have blood drawn.  If they refuse, they are immediately fired.  Continental was pretty strict about drug and alcohol use.  They did random drug testing on a regular basis.  It didn't matter if you had just returned to your home domicile from a 4-day trip, and could think of nothing but going home, washing the airplane funk that tends to seep into every pore, and go to bed.  If your number came up, you were not leaving the airport without peeing in a cup.  Every now and again, the entire crew would be tested.  That was almost always due to some kind of personal beef between someone on the crew and another employee.  Translation: A crew member's ex was looking for payback.

And did you ever get your 'We Need Longer Layovers in Cancun' movement, off the ground (pun intended).

Unfortunately, no.  But I was thrilled when I had more seniority and was able to hold trips with longer layovers in desirable places. 

 
 
 
devangelical
5.1.2  devangelical  replied to  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom @5.1.1    2 weeks ago
trips with longer layovers in desirable places...

jrSmiley_9_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
5.1.3  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom @5.1.1    2 weeks ago

Wow, I never knew any of this. Very interesting! Who knew that there was so much backstabbing either. 

But I was thrilled when I had more seniority and was able to hold trips with longer layovers in desirable places. 

That is the cool part of what you did. You got to see the world. That must have been amazing! 

 
 
 
devangelical
5.2  devangelical  replied to  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom @5    2 weeks ago

meh, my age is showing. back in the day, there were no male flight attendants and the flight crews did coke.

 
 
 
Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom
5.2.1  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom  replied to  devangelical @5.2    2 weeks ago
back in the day, there were no male flight attendants and the flight crews did coke.

Don't know much about the use of party pharmaceuticals during a flight, but I did know a few flight attendants who worked the supply side. There was a gal in my training class that was arrested for transporting a suitcase full of coke from Germany to the US.  Most people, myself included, were truly surprised to hear about it. She was sweet and smart and fun to fly with.  Her name was Debra Jo Fondren, and she was 1978 Playboy Playmate of the Year.  We were surprised about that, too.    

 
 
 
†hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh
5.2.2  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh  replied to  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom @5.2.1    2 weeks ago

Nothing like snorting a line off a playboy Model's boobies.

It's shameful law enforcement would deprive someone of realizing their dreams.

 
 
 
devangelical
5.2.3  devangelical  replied to  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom @5.2.1    2 weeks ago

sorry for the delay in responding. after learning that you hung out with a coked up flight attendant that was also an ex playboy bunny, I suddenly realized there was a domestic chore I urgently needed to complete. ...er, she was easy to find on the internet and has aged very nicely. she runs a beauty school north of dallas. you should reconnect and then contact me immediately.

I never heard any of them doing coke during a flight either. The airline I worked for in the 70's had a ground crew that had their own import business going on between LA and Acapulco though. I guess we were amateurs. we stole all the coors the tourists tried to ship thru their luggage connection since it was illegal for them to do so. we considered it our civic duty. >hic<

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
5.3  Trout Giggles  replied to  Sister Mary Agnes Ample Bottom @5    2 weeks ago

Every time I've had a bad experience it's always been United at Hobby Lobby in Houston. When they merged did they keep the drunk pilots and let go of the sober ones?

Both times we had to wait on our flight.

Oh! And had to wait on a United flight in Denver. I told Mr Giggles not to book United but he did anyway

 
 
 
WallyW
6  WallyW    2 weeks ago

Way back in the day knew some TWA pilots that told some very interesting tales about times aloft and on layover

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
7  Paula Bartholomew    2 weeks ago

I once reported a pilot for smelling like a brewery when I worked airport security.  They did nothing about it and that pilot ended up damaging the plane.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
7.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Paula Bartholomew @7    2 weeks ago
But I was thrilled when I had more seniority and was able to hold trips with longer layovers in desirable places. 

Well, that is not reassuring. 

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
7.1.1  Paula Bartholomew  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @7.1    2 weeks ago

Was your comment meant for me?  What you pasted has me a little confused.

 
 
 
Kavika
8  Kavika     2 weeks ago

I've been in some pretty scary airports in the South Pacific, Caribbean and the old airport in Hong Kong.

Kai Tak was considered one of the scariest airports in the world. It closed in 1998.

Kai-Tak-Airport-2-400x299.jpg

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
8.1  seeder  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Kavika @8    2 weeks ago

Egads! Glad I never landed there.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
8.2  Trout Giggles  replied to  Kavika @8    2 weeks ago

Is that plane trying to land in between buildings?

 
 
 
Kavika
8.2.1  Kavika   replied to  Trout Giggles @8.2    2 weeks ago

On landings at Kai Tak, yes you came in between the high rises on home side and the home on the other...It was interesing to look out the window and realize that you were flying by looking in peoples windows.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
8.2.2  Trout Giggles  replied to  Kavika @8.2.1    2 weeks ago

I guess you get used to some stranger looking in your living room window.....when you're living on the 10th floor

 
 
 
Kavika
9  Kavika     2 weeks ago

Since someone brought up Continental Airlines. I'll have to tell a story about their Flight Attendants. 

I used to fly out of Honolulu on Continental to Guam. The flight crews would have a stay over there. It's a 5 1/2 flight out of Hono. 

They all stayed at the Hilton on the beach. Being someone that was interested in their learning the local culture and all of the local hot spots I would arrive at the Hilton at 6pm. (Happy Hour was from 5pm to 8pm) I stayed in the company apartment. I'd have a few poo poo's and sip some Guam tea. And after some conversation, I would volunteer to show them the town and its hot spots. Being native (just not a Chamorro) and speaking a bit of the language. Soon we'd be off to the bright lights...We'd lava lava all night long and arrive at my favorite restaurant just in time for breakfast of eggs and hot hot Portuguese sausage. 

After I would drop them off at the Hilton and then make plans for a late afternoon swim in the sea, perhaps a bit of snorkeling and then start all over again that evening. 

Guam was always one of my favorite stops.  

Hafa dai

 
 
 
Raven Wing
9.1  Raven Wing  replied to  Kavika @9    2 weeks ago

That does sound like very fun place to layover on a flight. My Nephew, who was in the Navy and stationed in Guam for 2 years several years ago, said it was a really great place. He always wanted to go back, but, never got the chance.

 
 
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