O’Leary calls for cabin crew to land planes in emergency

6th Sep 2010
O’Leary calls for cabin crew to land planes in emergency

Calls from Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary to replace the second pilot on flights with an air stewardess have been branded as “crazy” and “dangerous” by pilots.

In his latest cost-saving idea, Michael O’Leary, has suggested cabin crew could instead be trained to take the controls and land the plane in an emergency.

In an interview with Bloomberg Business Week, O’Leary, who has previously suggested that planes could fly with “standing-only” areas for passengers, said: “Why does every plane have two pilots?

“Really, you only need one pilot. Let’s take out the second pilot. Let the b——computer fly it.”

When asked what would happen if the single pilot fell ill while flying a plane, he said: “If the pilot has an emergency, he rings the bell, he calls her in. She could take over.”


The idea has been lambasted by pilots, who questioned the Irish entrepreneur’s commitment to passenger safety.

Jim McAuslan, the general secretary of the British Airline Pilots’ Association, said: “Are there no lengths to which he will not go to get publicity?

“His suggestion is unwise, unsafe and the public will be horrified.”

O’Leary also previously raised the idea of charging passengers to use the aircraft lavatories.

Earlier this year, he introduced an extra baggage charge during the summer holiday season, which vastly increased the cost of checking in luggage for a journey.


Recommended for you

Follow Breaking Travel News

Travel Events Calendar

Media Partnerships

Global Restaurant Investment ForumThe Hospitality & Tourism SummitCATHIC
ITB AsiaChina Outbound Travel & Tourism MarketThe Travel Marketing Store
Serviced Apartment SummitWorld Travel MarketIMEX
AHICWTTCRoutes Online
UBM Aviation