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Thursday, September 4, 2014

trucks are driven by cleaners on highway ! ~ and pilot sleeps as plane descends !!!

As one travels on any highway, one could see so many trucks – the lorries transport everything that we need ...the drivers drive long hours and are on the wheel continuously – exposing themselves to stress – there is one category of helpers (called cleaners) – who literally run all menial jobs in maintaining the vehicle and all the boss (driver) needs ... jokes galore on them – they are ill-treated, undergo all the rigours in the hope of becoming a driver one day .......... and people say, that many many trucks on highways are driven by cleaners who may not be holding the proper licence nor know the nuances .... they jump in to the profession, learn things the hardway, become  capable drivers one day!!

When we grew up, getting to see an airplane itself was an event – air travel was a dream – something only rich and famous would do .. not anylonger is not the theme of this post.  As you wait in the airport for security check-up and about to board, you see neatly dressed Pilots and other crew walk nonchalantly ..... a grand job of piloting an aircraft - Pilot licensing or certification refers to permits to fly aircraft that are issued by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) in each country, establishing that the holder has met a specific set of knowledge and experience requirements. They are among the highest paid jobs too.

A recent article in Daily Mail mentions that four British pilots are currently allowed to fly commercial airliners while wearing artificial arms ~ and an even higher number have been cleared as medically fit to fly with at least one false leg, the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority said. The information was released  after it emerged that a captain lost control of a Flybe plane carrying 47 passengers. Reports state that a pilot with a prosthetic arm landed 'heavily' into Belfast City Airport after his arm came detached.  His prosthetic left arm had become detached from the steering mechanism or ‘yoke’ as he was coming in to land. The 46-year-old was forced to guide the plane in the dark and against a heavy gusting wind with his right hand. But because he had to switch his hand across to steer the plane he could not then ease back on the throttle to slow it down.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) revealed that pilots with prosthetic limbs are allowed to fly commercial planes, although it is ‘pretty rare’; but eyesight problems such as colour-blindness are a far more likely bar to becoming a pilot.

Jetlag, medically referred to as desynchronosis and rarely circadian dysrhythmia,  a physiological condition which results from alterations to the body's circadian rhythms resulting from rapid long-distance trans-meridian travel on high-speed aircraft.  A pill to prevent jet lag may be in sight after scientists discovered the gene that causes the condition. The gene, Lhx1, controls waking and sleeping patterns and could also help control dementia, sleep disorders and help shift workers, researchers claim. In the new study, researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies disrupted the light-dark cycles in mice. Using the mouse-version of jet lag - an 8-hour shift in their day-night cycle - the scientists found that those with little or no Lhx1 readjusted much faster to the shift in pattern than normal mice.

~ all the above will go for a toss, when you read another report which stated that ‘Plane carrying 300 people plunged 5,000ft while pilot took a nap and co-pilot was 'working' on her tablet’.... reported in TOI and in Daily Mail, it was Jet Airways flight in airspace over Turkey when it descended.  Reports suggest that authorities have launched an investigation after a Jet Airways aircraft dropped more than 5,000ft in airspace over Turkey while its pilot was taking a nap. An aviation regulator looking into whether the co-pilot had also dozed off as the Boeing 777-300 travelled from Mumbai to Brussels last Friday, the Times of India reported. The co-pilot told officials she was busy on her tablet and did not notice that the plane had lost altitude. The pilots were unaware of the situation until they received an emergency call from an air traffic controller in Ankara, who demanded to know why the aircraft, which can hold almost 300 passengers, had dropped out of its assigned flight level of 34,000ft.

Other aircraft were flying at the altitude that the commercial aircraft had descended to, and the airspace over Turkey is busier than normal as airlines avoid conflict zones in Iraq and Ukraine. A source told the Times of India: ‘The commander was taking controlled rest, which means he was sleeping as per global airline norms where pilots take rest in the cockpit by turn on long flights.

Lorries are driven by illiterate, unqualified drivers helped by lesser or no educated, lesser qualified cleaners.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.
18th Aug 2014.

With inputs taken from Daily Mail & Times of India.

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