Mandatory alcohol tests will show lack of respect to pilots

Mandatory routine alcohol and drug tests for pilots before take-off are not procedures that should be implemented, though I am in favour of random tests for them (Make alcohol tests for pilots mandatory, by Mr Lim Boon Seng; Sept 21).

Such tests would be an insult to the core of the profession. These pilots are professionals and should be accorded due respect and recognition. In return, the pilots are expected to be disciplined and responsible as hundreds of lives depend on them in the air.

Singapore Airlines (SIA) is one of the top airlines in the world, with one of the best safety and service records. It achieved this status not by mere luck, but through decades of careful planning, hard work and consistent teamwork from all the staff concerned, including the pilots. So, let us keep up with the good teamwork.

However, I fully agree that pilots should be physically fit to carry out their duties well.

Perhaps SIA could form a committee to routinely check on the pilots and ensure that they are physically and mentally fit at all times.

Pavithran Vidyadharan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 26, 2018, with the headline 'Mandatory alcohol tests will show lack of respect to pilots'. Subscribe