ibusinesslines.com November 14, 2018

Drunk Japanese pilot arrested one hour before his flight

02 November 2018, 07:02 | Kelvin Horton

He was due to fly from Heathrow to Tokyo Haneda

JAL's airplane is seen at Haneda Airport in Tokyo Japan Feburuary 9 2018

A spokesman for the police said a test on the man, who was due to fly as co-pilot, revealed 189 milligrams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood - nearly 10 times the legal limit of 20 milligrams for a pilot.

The driver of a crew bus had alerted cops after smelling alcohol on the Japanese pilot, NHK reports.

A test later revealed that Jitsukawa had 189mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood, almost 10 times the U.K.'s legal limit of 20 mg for pilots, according to the BBC.

Under Japan's Road Traffic Law, drivers are considered to be driving under the influence if they have an alcohol-per-liter-of-breath reading of 0.15 milligrams or higher.

He was arrested on October 28 just 50 minutes before the plane was due to leave, with the flight finally taking off after a 69-minute delay.

The airline said the pilot drank two bottles of wine and five cans of beer for six hours from 6 pm the night before the flight to Tokyo's Haneda airport.

Jitsukawa was remanded in custody and will be sentenced at Isleworth Crown Court on 29 November.

The flight was operated by a Boeing 777 aircraft which holds up to 244 passengers.

It apologised on Thursday for the incident.

JAL's apology came a day after another Japanese airline, All Nippon Airways, apologized for multiple delays to short-hop flights from the island of Okinawa.

'We are certain (the in-house breath test) wasn't conducted properly, ' Muneaki Kitahara, JAL's head of communications, told a press conference.

The last-minute sickie forced the airline to delay five flights linking Okinawa island and smaller regional islands, affecting 619 passengers.

Transport Minister Keiichi Ishii on Friday told reporters that the government would look into tightening the rules on drinking by flight crews.

The flight was delayed for about an hour and had to proceed with two pilots instead of the usual three.

Katsutoshi Jitsukawa, 42, who works for Japan Airlines, was arrested on 28 October after failing a breath test.

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