Date:Monday October 8 2007
If we needed any further proof that the World really has gone mad we have got it here after an airline pilot was sacked for letting Blackburn Rovers midfielder Robbie Savage onto the flight deck.
Anti-terrorism rules prohibit pilots from allowing members of the public near the controls, but as Pablo Mason (the pilot) allowed Savage to do so (on the Rovers private charter coming back from Finland after a UEFA Cup Qualifying match) in order to help ease Sav's fear of flying he was sacked!!!
Mason told the BBC: "Yes I broke a rule. I did interpret the rule wasn't quite as strict for a private charter, which this was. Everyone on board knew each other.
"I think above all his anxiety about flying has been relaxed in some way.
"He knows a little more about how and why a modern airline gets into the sky and I think he sees the captain as being someone to trust and place his trust in."
Mason, a former Gulf War RAF pilot (Capt. Mason, who carried out 23 bombing missions over Iraq during the first Gulf War) also runs a fear of flying course for passengers (such as Sav) who have a fear of flying is to appeal the decision, and Rovers have said they will back him, with them having already sent a letter to Mytravel (the private charter company).
A spokesman for Rovers said: "The club and Robbie Savage sent a letter at the time to the airline authorities explaining our version of events."
Whereas as a Mytravel spokesman said: "We have a zero tolerance policy towards any actions which could endanger the safety of our passengers and employees."
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Date:Monday October 8 2007
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