Pilots admit they are making mistakes because of a lack of flying time


Airline pilots are making mistakes because they have become rusty because of the lack of flying time during the coronavirus pandemic.

Dozens of pilots have told NASA’s Aviation Safety Reporting System that they have made errors since getting back into the cockpit.

On one occasion a pilot forgot to disengage the parking brake when pulling away from the gate.

Another pilot struggled to land a plane in heavy wind, only succeeding in doing so at the third attempt.

Other incidents included a first officer forgetting to turn on the de-icing system, which ensures that the altitude and speed sensors operate properly.

The coronavirus pandemic has wrought havoc on the aviation industry with thousands of flights being grounded as demand for air travel slumped.

Also, the Boeing 737 Max, which was grounded in March 2019 after two crashes, only returned to the skies last month.

According to the aviation analytics company Cirium, nearly a third of the world’s passenger jets have been parked either in central Australia or the Mojave Desert in California.

It has seen pilots being laid off as airlines try to weather the financial storm. American and United Airlines, two of the biggest carriers, has sent 32,000 staff on unpaid leave.