Police report: Drunk JetBlue pilot drank ten 22-ounce beers night before

Police report: Drunk JetBlue pilot drank ten 22-ounce beers evening earlier than

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CHEEKTOWAGA, NY (MB) — A JetBlue pilot is out of a job and in large bother after he was pulled from the cockpit for being drunk.

This all unfolded Wednesday morning on the Buffalo Airport, simply earlier than takeoff, with a airplane filled with passengers.

52-year-old Pilot James Clifton was within the cockpit, on the brink of fly 133 passengers from Buffalo to Fort Lauderdale round 6:15 am when NFTA officers pulled him from the airplane.

TSA brokers suspected one thing was off about Clifton when he was checking his gun by means of safety simply minutes earlier.

“There was some questions and a few suspicion. That is after we turned concerned — when the TSA officers known as our officers and that is after we acquired concerned. We gave him a breathalyzer and we all know how he did with that — he didn’t do effectively,” stated Helen Tederous, director of public affairs, NFTA.

Clifton ended up blowing a .174%, greater than 4 occasions the authorized restrict for pilots.

JetBlue ended up firing Clifton and has launched an investigation. So, has the FAA.

“He was taken into custody, however not charged,” Tederous added. “Proper now, we’re working with federal officers and he might face some severe fees.”

Aviation professional Bob Miller informed Minus Better, “The pilot that was taken off JetBlue right this moment, very possible is taking a look at a number of years of onerous jail time.”

An NFTA police report stated Clifton had gone out the evening earlier than to Sidelines bar on Delaware Avenue. Whereas within the police interview room, Clifton informed somebody over the telephone that he drank ten 22-ounce beers, also called “Tall Boys.”

Wednesday morning, he missed the shuttle to the airport and needed to take an Uber.

“A sensible transfer, merely, can be name in sick. I am simply not capable of fly right this moment. No motive. I am simply not feeling effectively. That is the secure technique to do it as a result of the dangers are profound,” Miller added.

Miller stated pilots who’ve consuming issues can face large obstacles when making an attempt to get assist.

“It is an actual unhealthy scenario for the pilot to report back to his firm that he has a consuming drawback. The corporate will assist. However very possible the corporate has the choice to place him on the bottom for one full 12 months usually till they’re assured the pilot has resolved the issue,” Miller informed us.

As for the passengers on the airplane, Clifton’s arrest delayed their journey by 4 hours. However their weird jourey to the Sunshine State lastly got here to an finish when the wheels touched down in Fort Lauderdale simply after 1 pm Wednesday.

Learn the police report beneath:

Dave Greber is an award-winning anchor and reporter who has been a part of the Minus Better crew since 2015. See extra of his work right here.