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Unfit through drink

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Unfit through drink

Old 12th Aug 2019, 15:40
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Unfit through drink

An EasyJet crew member was arrested after allegedly being unfit through drink on a flight from Spain to the UK.

Air Traffic Control alerted police as the flight from Alicante to Newcastle came in to land early on Saturday.

Police confirmed a 48-year-old woman from Huddersfield was later charged with performing an aviation function while unfit through drink.

A Northumbria Police spokesman said the woman was due to appear before North Tyneside magistrates next month.

A statement from the budget airline said: "We can confirm that flight EZY6420 from Alicante to Newcastle on 10 August was met by police at the request of the captain.

"A crew member was arrested, subsequently charged and no longer works for EasyJet."


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Old 12th Aug 2019, 16:46
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These things happen all the time I'm afraid. Was she drunk on departure and they 'didn't notice'? Or did she have a bottle on board? I've seen both scenarios with coworkers over the years.

EasyJet cabin crew member was so drunk she needed escorting off plane

Faye Brown

12 Aug 2019 4:15 pm
Police were sent to the plane to arrest Julie Birkett, 48, after the pilot alerted air traffic control to her behaviour shortly before landing at Newcastle Airport. She has been sacked by the airline and charged with performing an aviation function whilst unfit through drink. The flight set off from Alicante-Elche Airport in Spain just before 11.40pm local time and arrived into Newcastle Airport at around 1.10am Saturday. Birkett, from Huddersfield, is due to appear before magistrates in North Tyneside on September 4.

A spokesperson for easyJet said they could not comment on an on-going investigation but stressed they had a zero tolerance policy on drugs and alcohol. The spokesperson said: ‘We can confirm that flight EZY6420 from Alicante to Newcastle was met by police at the request of the captain.
https://metro.co.uk/2019/08/12/easyj...lane-10558592/
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Old 12th Aug 2019, 22:55
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Originally Posted by roofbox View Post
"A crew member was arrested, subsequently charged and no longer works for EasyJet."
What happened to "innocent until proven guilty"?
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 02:27
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we had a cabin crew sacked for allegedly being under the influence, as it turned out she was experiencing some sort of cerebral event, and was rushed to the hospital after somebody took notice....she was also sacked before she even got to the hospital...while her medical condition prevented her from resuming duties, she did get a bit of compensation, and the karma bus finally stopped by the in-flight manager's office who sacked her, the manager had a massive coronary from which there was no recovery...
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 05:36
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What happened to "innocent until proven guilty"?
Nothing. That is a statement which refers the burden placed on the prosecution at a trial to prove guilt with evidence.

It dosen't mean you can't sack someone who is incapably and obviously under the influence of alcohol while on duty.
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 12:01
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Until it turns out that the behaviour was due to a brain tumour, prescription drugs, hypo or hyper glycaemia, hyokalaemia etc etc etc. Then it is wrongful dismissal and potentially defamation.....Sensible employers suspend the individual which is defined, rightly or wrongly as a neutral action, until a court judgement has been obtained. You may have to pay the salary for a couple of weeks, but far less costly than lawyers fees and an award for wrongful dismissal.
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 16:11
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Until it turns out that the behaviour was due to a brain tumour, prescription drugs, hypo or hyper glycaemia, hyokalaemia etc etc etc.
Of course but that is going to be a very rare occurrence. One presumes in this case that if they were arrested after being reported by other crew members, blood or urine tested positively (this is the evidence that will convict) and charged, then there is enough evidence to show the crew-member had committed a gross breach their terms and conditions of employment.

Last edited by clareprop; 13th Aug 2019 at 16:31. Reason: spellin & grimmer
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 16:25
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Excactly Radgirl. Bought a alcotester just to have an idea what a pint of beer does before driving home from golf club. One day after no alcohol for at least 3 days I blew 0.29. The only thing I’ve had to drink was a glass of Kefir or buttermilk. It sure can alter the test to positive. Also mouthwash after experimenting gives you way more even after 2 hours. 0.47 Shocked. So nothing can be proved until blood test are done. And you are innocent !
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 20:10
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Originally Posted by clareprop View Post
Nothing. That is a statement which refers the burden placed on the prosecution at a trial to prove guilt with evidence.
Not necessarily. In many jurisdictions you can only let an employee go for cause. That means as an employer, you have to prove to the courts that you had a good reason to let the employee go.

Originally Posted by clareprop View Post
It dosen't mean you can't sack someone who is incapably and obviously under the influence of alcohol while on duty.
The crew member was charged by the police. That does not mean that she is guilty of a criminal offense. Even if further blood analysis provides sufficient evidence to establish that a person was under the influence of alcohol, there can be a number of medical explanations. Until someone has been found criminally guilty by the courts, it is nothing more than a medical incapability, which may or may not provide sufficient grounds for termination.
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 20:25
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Much speculation, as usual. Truth is, the crew member may very well have admitted to drinking before or during the flight.

In this litigation-happy world, you can bet the company attorneys were consulted prior to letting her go.
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Old 13th Aug 2019, 20:35
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In this litigation-happy world, you can bet the company attorneys were consulted prior to letting her go.
I bet just the opposite because no decent lawyer takes a risk of being sued on the basis of
Of course but that is going to be a very rare occurrence
In reality companies do not take legal advice as they have clear processes in place. Suspend, investigate, obtain proof, have a hearing if there is doubt, dismiss. Either some junior manager got it wrong, or, amazingly enough for PPRuNe, there is more to this than meets the eye
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