Foreign Affairs

Mihin Lanka Pilot Snoozes In Cockpit By Himself

A Mihin Lanka Captain was found snoozing in the cockpit of a commercial flight en route to Colombo, whilst his First Officer of the low price carrier was locked out the airline’s sources told Colombo Telegraph yesterday.

Capt Gajendra Wagh (left hand seat) Capt. Themiya Abeywickrama Manager Training and Standards (right hand seat)

Capt Gajendra Wagh (left hand seat) Capt. Themiya Abeywickrama Manager Coaching and Requirements (proper hand seat)

The panic stricken Mihin Lanka First Officer (F/O) of flight MJ 408 Subki Lafir and the cabin crew returning from Sharjah on the 1st of Could 2015, finally succeeded in their frantic bid to obtain re-entry into the flight deck by using the emergency ‘overriding’ access code, after the F/O located himself locked out by his operating Captain Wagh, who was subsequently located rapidly asleep at the flight controls.

“The First Officer and the Flight Purser Rozeena were relieved to lastly gain entry into the Flight Deck following they found themselves in a carbon copied scenario that the fateful crew of ‘German Wings’ found themselves in not too long ago ”, inside sources from within the airline told Colombo Telegraph yesterday.

Coincidentally the F/O Lafir could not have located a a lot more proper day than the 1st of Might to make that dreaded cockpit distress contact ‘May Day! Could Day! Could Day!’.

Even so in this instance he produced this get in touch with out to his Flight Purser Rozeena, who collectively with him managed to sooner or later acquire entry to the Flight Deck by using the secret code made for such emergency purposes.

Captain Wagh an Indian national is reported to often commute from his home town in Bombay to operate his scheduled flights, even though he has his own accommodation in Seeduwa, a town which is situated closer to Colombo’s Bandaranaike International Airport Katunayake.

Nonetheless on this distinct day it was further reported that he arrived from Bombay in the morning of 30th April 2015 and headed to the Mihin Lanka workplace in Colombo to total some official function.

“Obviously Capt. Wagh was not totally rested for this extended night turn about flight, even although he was provided with adequate time to rest by the airline. This is probably the purpose why he was fatigued on the return sector” mentioned a Cabin Crew member of the spending budget carrier.

What is intriguing to know is why the airline’s newly introduced security rule was not applied by Capt. Wagh and F/O Lafir, exactly where a Cabin Crew Member now demands to be positioned in the flight deck anytime a single of the ‘two man’ cockpit crew measures out.

This amended safety rule was produced by Mihin Lanka when it was advised to all airlines after the low expense carrier ‘German Wings’ recently experienced a similar situation.

First Officer Subki Lafir

First Officer Subki Lafir

In that fatal accident the F/O of that airline locked out his Captain in flight and in a successful suicidal bid went onto to crash the aircraft in true ‘Kamikaze’ style killing all on aboard into the mountain variety of the French Alps.

Even so the duration that the F/O remained out of the flight deck is also of value, as it is now identified that if a person falls asleep for more than 20 minutes his body’s ‘circadian rhythm’ can send him into a deep sleep thereafter.

It is still unsure if the F/O Lafir is however to file an Air Security Report (ASR) with regards to this incident, as Colombo Telegraph can confirm that Capt. Wagh has gone on to operate 3 much more industrial flights because this incident.

However Gerald Mendis Mihin Lanka&#8217s In Flight Solutions Consultant did confirm to Colombo Telegraph that Flight Purser Rozeena had officially informed Manager Manique Rodrigo and also him about this incident in an e mail the following day.

“You can’t blame our Captains for sleeping in the sky as equally our senior management are frequently caught napping on ground when it comes to security connected matters. A comprehensive overhaul requirements to take spot inside the senior management of the Flight Operations Division (FOD) if we are to preserve this an airline safe” mentioned a rather disgruntled airline official.

“Capt. Wagh is almost certainly the only Pilot who could very easily sleep via even a thunderstorm, as he has been caught napping on numerous occasions by several F/O’s who strangely have not officially reported it” continued the airline official.

It was also shockingly reported that the flight handle tower in Chennai had failed in their bid to get via to flight MJ 408 on many occasions when Capt. Wagh was rapidly asleep at the flight controls. A passing Sri Lankan Airlines aircraft had also failed in their try to get in make contact with with MJ 408 during Capt.Wagh’s period of slumber, exactly where they had gone on to use the emergency frequency.

A single can’t blame the sentiments of these airline’s officials as it has now been frequently reported that the Chief Operating Officer (COO) Capt. Druvi Perera’s competencies as a ‘Pilot and an Administrator’ was each exposed in the ‘Weliamuna Report’, which has left many bemused as to how he nonetheless mysteriously continues to stay holding his posts overlooking both airlines.

His appointed Manager Flight / Ground Safety Capt. Keminda Yahampath’s whose position is but to be endorsed by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) of Sri Lanka is also reported to be as tainted as his COO on his own pilot connected incidents.

Whilst Capt. Yahampath was much more popular to have burst the tires of the aircraft he commanded into Trivandrum prior to his promotion and quizzical appointment, his boss COO Capt. Druvi’ Perera’s commanded flight skidded off the runway in Chennai going on to damage the landing strip and lights where it was all hushed up during the instances the nation was run by the Rajapaksas. The Director Flight Operations (DFO) Capt. Pujitha Jayakody’s character is also questionable exactly where he was reported to have getting apprehended and remanded by the regional police in Singapore for ‘shoplifting’. With a pending court case for his theft, Capt. Jayakody has avoided setting foot in the ‘Lion City’ for the previous 25 years.

&#8220That fairly significantly sums up the management of Mihin Lanka’s flight operations department who runs the security portion of the flying business.&#8221 stated our source.

The disparity and inconsistencies displayed by the senior management that now commands both airlines since the merge is where in one more Sri Lankan Airlines reported incident Capt. Anupama Pathirane and his F/O are currently grounded pending inquiry into an incident on that took spot on their flight from Trichy to Colombo final year.

Nonetheless in this instance the Mihin Lanka Capt. Wagh and F/O Lafir still continue in their flying roles.

&#8220The whole nation continues to watch in horror as numerous security related incidents reported in the media is becoming ignored by the Chairman Ajit Dias of both Sri Lankan Airlines and Mihin Lanka, his Board of Directors and furthermore H.M.C. Nimalasiri the Director General of Civil Aviation of Sri Lanka.&#8221l amented a very senior airport official.

“However what is a lot more severe about this incident is as to why the airline’s management has turned a blind eye especially when this incident took place in international air space. The seriousness of the non-held inquiry up to now is as severe as the incident itself, that now warrants an instant investigation into the management of the flight operations department” the senior airport official further stated.

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