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Japan Airlines tightens alcohol rules for pilots

by host

Japan Airlines will introduce a new breathalyser system at airports abroad after one of its pilots was arrested at Heathrow Airport for being drunk.

Katsutoshi Jitsukawa was arrested last month after a test showed he was nine times over the legal alcohol limit.

Reports in Japan say Mr Jitsukawa also cheated on an airline breathalyser test before his arrest.

The new measures also come after a series of Japan Airlines flights were delayed due to intoxicated pilots.

Japanese law does not set limits for alcohol consumption by pilots.

Instead, it is up to airlines to determine alcohol limits for pilots on duty.

Mr Jitsukawa was arrested after he was found to have 189mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood in his system – the legal limit for a pilot in the UK is 20mg.

He had earlier cheated on an in-house breathalyser test, taking it at a distance from the chief pilots who were supposed to oversee it, the Asahi Shimbun newspaper said. The co-pilot did not blow the necessary amount of air into the device and “deliberately got around the test”, the newspaper quoted the Japan Airlines report as saying.