United Airlines passengers stunned when pilot changes out of uniform and takes a NAP in first class an hour into the flight –UK Daily Mail
United Airlines passengers stunned to see pilot take off clothes and fall asleep in first class -UK Mirror
Reading these headlines, you would think the pilot left the cockpit unattended. You might think he blatantly violated his duty and protocols. He did nothing of the sort.
I’ll admit, it was a bit unorthodox for him to remove his uniform before he went to sleep, but don’t fool yourself into thinking he did something wrong.
This flight was operated by a United Airlines Boeing 757-200, a plane that does not have a dedicated crew rest area for pilots. As a consequence, one of the 16 business class seats on the aircraft is assigned as a pilot rest seat. Three pilots typically operate a 757 transatlantic flight, with two on-duty while one is off-duty.
As a United spokesperson notes:
The safety of our customers and employees is of prime importance at United Airlines. On transatlantic flights, pilots are required to take a rest break. This aircraft is operated by a cockpit crew of three and this pilot was on his rest period.
That’s it. Not only is practical, it is mandated. There is no need to worry.
I guess I can understand why an irregular flyer might be concerned to see the captain snoozing in business class. But there is absolutely no need for alarm. As Zach from The Points Guy notes, this rest prevents fatigue, which keeps passengers safer.
Not to mention there is no international First Class on UA’s flights any more but news outlets continue to inaccurately talk about the front cabin as F rather than Business. Bad journalism which only goes to unnecessarily reinforce notions of “fake news”!
Idiots shouldn’t be allowed to write “news” stories.
Not unorthodox for him to remove his uniform (likely just his shirt) to sleep in. Most crew either do this or put a v-neck sweater over it. It 1) keeps the shirt from wrinkling and making you look disheveled, and 2) removes the appearance of sleeping on duty. Does United have a curtain to pull around the crew rest seat? We always did at Delta.
You think this is a fuss? Just imagine if this had been a Chinese airline: the press would have been all over it, the blogs incandescent and full of over the top comments. The real story is that US airlines continue to fly these single aisle , old -tech rust buckets on intercontinental flights ( and, bizarrely, people pay a premium to fly on them).
I agree with you about how this would have blown up even further if it was a Chinese pilot. But what’s the problem with 757 on transatlantic routes? Same business class seat, same economy class seat. I don’t mind it.
I think having looked at the picture this is a fake story. And a photo shopped picture.
If you look closely his uniform the epaulets have 5 stripes. That doesn’t exist on a United pilot uniform. Secondly note that the pilot has hung his uniform on a hanger but folded it on the seat next to him. The entire way that uniform is sitting there looks photoshopped especially considering the 5 stripes.
Even if it is true he’s done nothing remotely wrong (as you note Matthew) including taking his uniform shirt off so he can sleep better and not appear dishelved at the end of the flight.
Gyahahaha… was expecting to see this here since Matt a big fan of United. Oh well… that’s the quality of news on Daily Mail and Mirror anyway…