Pilot jailed for being three times over alcohol limit before flying passenger plane

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A PIA Boeing 777 plane lands at Heathrow Airport in Middlesex
A PIA Boeing 777 plane lands at Heathrow Airport in Middlesex

A pilot has been jailed for nine months for being over the legal alcohol limit before he was due to fly a plane carrying 156 passengers.

Irfan Faiz, 55, was found to have three times the legal amount of alcohol in his blood, Sky News reports.

The Pakistan International Airlines pilot was asked to leave the cockpit during checks for the flight from Leeds Bradford airport to Islamabad in September because he smelled of alcohol and appeared unsteady on his feet.

Leeds Crown Court heard that he gave an initial reading of 41 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath on a police officer's device.

The father-of-two later gave a reading of 28 micrograms.

The legal limit for driving a car is 35 micrograms, while flying a plane in the UK is nine.

According to the BBC, Mr Justice Coulson QC said Faiz had committed a "very serious offence".

Experienced pilot Faiz admitted to consuming three quarters of a bottle of whisky before the flight was due to depart at 22.10.

His barrister said that Faiz was not a heavy drinker but was under a lot of stress at the time due to a kidnap threat against his family.

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