I Wish I Were In Paris

From war to peace and politics to gossip, if we have an opinion on something we'll share it here.

Thursday, March 26, 2009


Jailed for 10 years, the Muslim pilot who paused to pray before taking emergency action in plane crash that killed 16

A Muslim pilot and co-pilot who paused to pray before taking emergency measures as they ditched a passenger plane in the sea, killing 16 people, has been sentenced to 10 years in jail.

Pilot Chafik Gharby and co-pilot Ali Kebaier were convicted of taking inadequate emergency measures by an Italian court.

The 2005 crash at sea off Sicily left survivors swimming for their lives, some clinging to a piece of the fuselage that remained floating after the ATR turbo-prop aircraft splintered upon impact.

There were 34 holidaymakers and five crew on board the plane when it went down.

A fuel-gauge malfunction was partly to blame, with technicians putting the wrong type of gauge on the plane before it took off.

It meant the pilot and crew believed they had more fuel than they actually did. The plane's engines cut out simultaneously when the fuel ran out.

However prosecutors also said the pilot succumbed to panic, praying out loud instead of following emergency procedures.

They claimed he then opted to crash-land the plane instead trying to reach a nearby airport.

'This was an unprecedented sentence but we have always maintained that it was an unprecedented incident,' observed Niky Persico, a lawyer for one of the victims.

'Never before in the history of aviation disasters has there been such a chain of events and counter events,' he added.

Another five employees of Tuninter, a subsidiary of Tunisair, were sentenced to between eight and nine years in jail by the court, in a verdict handed down yesterday.

The seven accused, who were not in court, will not spend time in jail until the appeals process has been exhausted.

I'm just curious about something, and I'll throw it right out there. Aside from the panic, if this had been a CHRISTIAN PILOT that paused to pray, would we even be having this discussion right now? I seriously doubt that we would!!


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