Air France Pilots Suspended Over Cockpit Brawl

Air France Pilots Suspended Over Cockpit Brawl

It’s kind of amazing how often we hear stories like this (and you have to wonder how often things happen without being reported).

Air France pilots fight, flight attendants intervene

Two Air France pilots have allegedly been suspended following an incident that occurred on a June 2022 flight from Geneva (GVA) to Paris (CDG). La Tribune obtained the report of the incident, which suggests that a dispute between two pilots became physical while inflight.

As the plane climbed to its cruising altitude, it’s reported that the pilots got into a verbal altercation that turned physical, with the pilots grabbing one another by their collars, and one pilot possibly hitting or slapping the other pilot.

Apparently the argument got so loud that the flight attendants heard it in the cabin. At that point they called the cockpit and then entered it, and the decision was made for one flight attendant to remain in the cockpit for the rest of the flight.

An Air France spokesperson has confirmed the “totally inappropriate behavior,” and that both pilots have been suspended pending the results of a full investigation.

This happens more often than you’d hope

We tend to think (hope?) that airline pilots are responsible, calm, and rational people who always have the best interests of passengers in mind. However, there are hundreds of thousands of airline pilots out there, and as is the case in any industry, there are going to be some bad apples.

Admittedly a screw-up in the cockpit has graver consequences than messing up in most other industries. If you work in retail and make a mistake, odds are that no one will die, and that you can still find a job elsewhere in the event that you’re fired. Meanwhile if you’re a pilot and make a mistake, you’ll potentially be terminated, lose the seniority you’ve worked for decades, and might even have your license taken away.

Nonetheless being a pilot can be stressful, and in some situations I can understand how there could be a disagreement. Still, to get to the point where argument is so loud that it can be heard in the cabin, and to see a physical altercation? Wow, that’s truly shocking.

Still, it’s not the first time we’ve seen a story like this. For example, just last month we saw a story of an Alaska Airlines flight that returned to the gate because two pilots couldn’t get along.

Bottom line

Two Air France pilots have been suspended following a cockpit brawl that occurred after takeoff. The pilots reportedly got into both a verbal and physical disagreement, which had to be broken up by flight attendants. One flight attendant then remained in the cockpit until landing.

What do you make of this cockpit brawl incident?

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