Two Air France pilots could not control themselves on a short flight, forcing a flight attendant to serve as a cockpit babysitter. What a disgrace to the French carrier.
Flight Attendant Steps In As Babysitter Over Two Brawling Air France Pilots
The incident occurred in June onboard an Air France flight from Geneva (GVA) to Paris (CDG). Shortly after takeoff, a verbal altercation turned physical according to La Tribune, with the two pilots allegedly grabbing onto one another’s collars.
The altercation was so loud that it could be heard outside the flight deck. Concerned, flight attendants entered the cockpit (meaning one or both of the pilots let them in) and broke up the fight. Emotions must have still been elevated, as one flight attendant remained inside the cockpit as a babysitter to the two pilots until the plane landed in Prais.
The two pilots have been suspended, pending an investigation. Air France has already called the behavior “totally inappropriate.”
We recently covered the story of two pilots on Alaska Airlines who also apparently could not stand being together, with one deciding to step off the flight prior to takeoff. There, I applauded the pilot for showing restraint: as immature as the inability to get along with your co-pilot may be, better to step off the flight than to start fighting midair, as the Air France pilots did.
> Read More: What Were Alaska Airlines Pilots Fighting About?
In this politically charged, divided age of human history, perhaps the more surprising thing is that this does not happen more often (or at least that we do not hear about it more often…).
Pilots are paid well for the job they do, precisely because we hold them to a higher standard. Unlike in many jobs, a pilot cannot have a bad day…mistakes are not trivial if they cost millions of dollars and more importantly, hundreds of lives. Thus, this is a serious issue. We may never hear any more details as Air France performs its investigation, but if pilots cannot get along with their colleagues, perhaps they are better suited to another line of work.