03 February 2009

aeroflot reservations?

Let me begin by saying that I have flown Aeroflot internationally and I really *like* flying Aeroflot. The seats are big and comfy, the food is quite decent, and I get tickled at everyone clapping when the plane lands.

But. An article in the Moscow Times highlighted an incident that happened in December. Passengers,suspecting their pilot was drunk, wanted a new crew. After all

"I don't think there's anyone in Russia who doesn't know what a drunk person looks like," said Katya Kushner, who, along with her husband, was one of the first to react when the pilot made his announcement. "At first, he was looking at us like we were crazy. Then, when we wouldn't back down, he said, 'I'll sit here quietly in a corner. We have three more pilots. I won't even touch the controls, I promise.'"

As passengers waited three hours for a new crew to board the plane, more than 100 of them signed a statement saying they believed that Cheplevsky was intoxicated.

At the same time, an Aeroflot representative sought to assure them that "it's not such a big deal if the pilot is drunk."

"Really, all he has to do is press a button and the plane flies itself," the representative said. "The worst that could happen is he'll trip over something in the cockpit."

I found this hilarious. And don't doubt it for a minute!

(A tv personality got on the phone, passengers signed a petition, and they got a new crew. Apparently a blood alcohol test is not included in the battery of pre-flight tests that a pilot undergoes.


Jim said...

How funny. I can just about hear all the PAP's cancelling their Aeroflot reservations now. :)

Seriously, I have flown Aeroflot multiple times on 12+ hour trips to and from Moscow. Never had any sign of a drunk pilot, and they were normally a very pleasant experience. As long as you don't count the bathrooms (ick!).

Tami said...

Oh. My. Word. Trip over something in the cockpit... only in Russia.
BTW - I've flown Aeroflot too, and enjoyed it. Our bathrooms were even clean. ;)

Suz said...

Oh my goodness! That is crazy!

Tina in CT said...

After reading the article on The Beet Goes On, I hope my daughter and family NEVER fly Aeroflat.

lh said...

Hilarious! We took Aeroflot Moscow to LA last October and an older woman died 2 1/2 hours outside of Moscow. The pilot did not turn around (as I understand they were supposed to) and flew the rest of the way to LA. Relieved I suppose that we didn't have to turn around but then we had to wait a couple of hours standing outside the plane in LA while they investigated. We were told that Aeroflot pretty much did things as they wanted and didn't bother with the international rules! I was glad I didn't know this inflight!

Andrea said...

Haha the nonchalant "ah, well, whatcha gonna do?" vibe rolling off the spokespeople in the article just tickles me. "Not a big deal if the pilot is drunk" tickles me even harder.

Nice that the passengers stood their ground, though!

Melissa said...

I just laughed out loud at the end of that statement. I guess I could be a pilot, if all you have to do is push a button, right? Seriously, we flew Aeroflot twice in-country (Moscow to Vladivostok & back) and had great experiences. Better, even, than experiences with Delta.

As Tami said...only in Russia! :)

Melissa said...

holy crap. we didnt fly them internationally, but we did within a few different regions. scary stuff. glad to hear about your dossier

Jenni said...

ACK! We flew Aeroflot in-country, and I'm so glad I didn't know about this before!