UK & World News
Pilot's Artificial Arm Detaches During Landing
The pilot of a passenger plane lost control of his aircraft after his prosthetic arm became detached during landing.
It happened during windy conditions on a Flybe flight from Birmingham to Belfast City Airport.
An Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) report revealed the 46-year-old pilot checked that his prosthetic left arm was securely attached prior to landing.
The report said the pilot then disconnected the autopilot and was flying the aircraft manually.
Shortly before touchdown on February 12 this year, the man's "prosthetic limb became detached from the yoke clamp, depriving him of control of the aircraft".
The pilot considered letting his co-pilot take over, but instead decide to move his right hand from the power levers on the yoke to regain control.
The report added: "He did this, but with power still applied and possibly a gust affecting the aircraft, a normal touchdown was followed by a bounce, from which the aircraft landed heavily."
None of the 47 passengers aboard were injured and the plane was not damaged.
Captain Ian Baston, Flybe's director of flight operations and safety, said the company was proud to be an equal opportunities employer.
"This, in common with most airlines, means we do employ staff with reduced physical abilities," he said.
"Where appropriate, and in accordance with Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) requirements, this does include pilots.
"The senior captain referred to in this report is one of Flybe's most experienced and trusted pilots.
"The airline confirms that at no time was the safety of its passengers or crew compromised in any way, nor was the aircraft damaged.
"Following the incident, Flybe immediately undertook a detailed internal investigation from which it determined a series of additional fail-safe safety checks.
"These were rigorously tested and instigated immediately to ensure that this type of incident could not happen again."