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An Airline Pilot Was Kicked Off His Plane After Passing Out Drunk in the Cockpit

The captain apparently managed to pass through a few security checkpoints before anyone noticed he was too wasted to fly.
Photo via Flickr user B C

Police in Alberta, Canada, are trying to figure out how a pilot for Sunwing Airlines managed to get through multiple security checkpoints before he passed out drunk in the airplane's cockpit ahead of its scheduled takeoff last weekend, the New York Times reports.

According to Paul Stacey of the Calgary Police Service, Miroslav Gronych showed up to work on Saturday at the Calgary International Airport "severely impaired by alcohol." Apparently, he managed to pass through a few pilot checkpoints, as well as airport security, without anyone noticing he was too wasted to fly.

It wasn't until he began acting strangely at the gate that Sunwig's staff noticed that something was off and notified the flight's co-pilot, who headed into the cockpit and reportedly found Gronych passed out.

"They found him slumped over in the seat," Stacey said at a press conference. "Obviously this had a very significant potential to cause great harm had the pilot actually been allowed to fly this plane."

Gronych was escorted off of the plane and all 99 passengers onboard the 737 managed to get to their destination safely with a new crew in place. As for the pilot, he'll face two counts of alcohol-related offenses in court Thursday, including being in control of an aircraft while being impaired, and having care of an aircraft with a BAC of over .08.

In a statement from Sunwing's spokeswoman Janine Massey, the airline said, "We are very apologetic for any upset that this has caused and would like to assure our customers that safety remains our utmost priority."