When a pilot fails an alcohol test, that's a serious matter. On Friday, Jan. 4, a pilot was arrested on board a plane at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. He was given an alcohol breath test and he failed. The American Eagle pilot was then taken to a nearby hopital for a blood alcohol test. He has been suspended by the airline according to The Chicago Tribune.
"The pilot was in the process of doing the pre-flight check and a witness had smelled alcohol on the pilot's breath," said airport spokesman Patrick Hogan. The airline has not fired Kolbjorn Jarle Kristiansen but instead has chosen to wait for the investigation to be completed. The results of the blood alcohol test could take "weeks."
If a pilot fails an alcohol test of any kind, one would assume that he would be fired immediately. A full investigation, however, is currently underway and perhaps there is some other explanation for the failed breath test. At this point, many are just wondering what exactly the pilot was thinking and if he was, in fact, drinking before taking other people's lives in his hands.
The plane that Kristiansen was set to pilot was heading to New York City's LaGuardia Airport. It was early in the morning -- just after 6 a.m. -- so it is somewhat harder to believe that he was drunk.
The pilot who failed the alcohol test yesterday could find himself without a job -- or worse.
© Effie Orfanides 2013