Transport Ministry Orders Firm Action Against 'Drunk' Citilink Pilot

BY :LONA OLAVIA, ANSELMUS BATA & EKO PRASETYO

DECEMBER 30, 2016

Jakarta. The Ministry of Transportation has ordered firm action against the Citilink pilot who allegedly arrived for work while drunk at Juanda International Airport in Surabaya, East Java, on Wednesday (28/12). This follows after a video of the incident went viral on social media.

The pilot was caught on CCTV camera while passengers on Citilink Flight QC 800 from Surabaya to Jakarta demanded that he should be replaced.

Bambang S. Ervan, a spokesperson for the ministry's Directorate General of Air Transportation , said the pilot, who has since been grounded, will be subjected to a thorough health check.

The ministry also instructed the airline management to take firm action against the pilot.

"Harsh sanctions will be imposed on the pilot if he violated health examination requirements and systematic procedures," Bambang said in Jakarta on Thursday evening.

Air transportation director general Suprasetyo earlier ordered the pilot to undergo another health examination despite the fact that the result of the initial test at the airport clinic was negative for the presence of drugs or alcohol.

"The pilot named Tekad Purna should undergo another medical checkup at the flight health office today," Suprasetyo said in a written statement on Wednesday.

Suprasetyo reiterated the government's zero-tolerance policy related to flight safety and security, saying all potential issues should be prevented as early as possible.

However, he also pointed out that the good name of the pilot should be restored if the result of the second health check is negative.

Chronology Report

The management of Citilink has meanwhile submitted a chronology report to the air transportation agency detailing the sequence of events. It is as follows:

05.09 a.m.: Pilot arrives in the flops and directly enters the aircraft at stand 5A during the boarding process. The pilot enters the cockpit and makes an announcement over the aircraft's public address system in an unclear voice. This results in complaints from passengers, who demand that the pilot must be replaced.

05.30 a.m.: All passengers disembark from the aircraft. Citilink decides to replace the pilot with Capt. Wahana Agus. All passengers board the plane except nine, who had canceled their flights.

06.20 a.m.: Flight QC 800 is pushed back to commence the flight to Halim Perdanakusuma Airport in Jakarta.

06.35 a.m.: Capt. Tekad is examined in the Graha Angkasa Pura I clinic by doctor Putu, with a negative result for drugs and alcohol.

The airline announced that Capt. Tekad Purna has been grounded until further notice. Citilink chief executive Abert Burhan also said the airline management is cooperating with the Transportation Ministry on further investigations.

"Citilink does not tolerate any actions from pilots that violate flight procedures and regulations and we are ready to impose further sanctions, including a possible dismissal," Albert said on Thursday.

The results of the second health examination on the pilot will be available next week.

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