August 17, 2008

Pilots Lose HC Battle for More Rest Hours

MUMBAI: It will be more work and less rest for Indian pilots, after all. The Bombay high court on Thursday let the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) have its way and dismissed a petition filed by three pilots' associations challenging a circular curbing the cabin crew's rest hours.

The pilots will be governed by stringent 16-year-old guidelines instead of the more scientifically structured rules framed in 2007 that aimed at reducing fatigue by providing longer breaks between flights.

Pilots from Air India, Indian and Jet Airways had formed a joint action committee of Airlines Pilots' Association to seek the withdrawal of the May 29, 2008 circular which kept the 2007 rules in abeyance and set up a committee for its review.

Their concern was that that shorter breaks between long-haul flights could hit the safety of the crew and passengers.

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