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19th Aug 2022

Pilots fly over destination airport at 37,000 feet – because they were both sleeping

Jack Peat

They only awoke after the autopilot disconnected 

Two pilots managed to overshoot their destination airport due to them both being asleep at the time.

The  Ethiopian Airlines flight #ET343 from Khartoum to Addis Ababa was at 37,000 ft when it was supposed to start the descent into the destination airport.

The Air Traffic Control tried to contact the crew several times without success.

When the autopilot disconnected, the alarm woke up the pilots of the Boeing Boeing 737-800 up.

They reacted and finally landed the plane on runway 25L about 25 minutes later.

The incident left people shocked, with many saying it was ‘unprofessional’ and ‘dangerous.’

One person wrote: “Hopefully both pilots got fired and the aviation authorities starting an investigation on the crew duty schedules etc of this airline! Thanks god that nothing bad happened.”

Another added: “this is unprofessional and dangerous” while a third added: “mad.”

But not everyone agreed that the pilots should be fired, with one person arguing they could have been overworked and the company “covered it up”.

And a separate person was unsurprised by the incident, commenting: “Ex controller here, trust me when I tell you its happened here as well.”

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