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Small plane lands amid traffic on New York motorway

A small plane has made a miraculous emergency landing amid traffic on a large motorway in the Bronx, NBC New York has reported.

The New York Fire Department said three of four people on board the plane suffered injuries in the unexpected landing near East 233rd Street, but none was life-threatening.

The aftermath of the landing was photographed by a nearby driver as emergency services attended to the plane and its passengers:

Civil Aviation Authority says safety 'number one priority'

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said safety is its "number one priority" after a poll by the pilots' union Balpa showed more than a half had fallen asleep while in flight.

A CAA spokesman said: "We think the new European flight-time limitation regulations maintain the UK's current high safety levels, and will actually increase safety for UK passengers travelling on some other European airlines.

The Civil Aviation Authority said safety is its 'number one priority'. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Archive/Press Association Images

"The changes will give the CAA far greater access to airline data to help us oversee fatigue risk management. We will shortly begin working with UK airlines over the introduction of the new system."

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Union claims EU pilot flight time proposals 'flawed'

The pilots' union Balpa said the flight time proposals being considered by the European Parliament "are flawed in many areas".

Balpa claims that under the rules, pilots will be:

  • Legally allowed to land an aircraft after having been awake for 22 hours
  • Operating longer haul flights with only two crew members rather than three
  • They could also be forced to work up to seven early starts in a row

Union says tiredness 'a real problem' for pilots

The general secretary of pilots' union Balpa told Daybreak that tiredness is "a real problem" for its members.

Jim McAuslan said there have been accidents worldwide "with fatigue as the main cause":

Poll finds 56% of pilots have fallen asleep while in flight

More than half of pilots have fallen asleep on the flight deck, according to a survey by pilots' union Balpa.

The union asked 500 commercial pilots about tiredness ahead of a European Parliament vote next Monday on new EU rules on flying hours.

56% of pilots said they had fallen asleep on the flight deck. Credit: ITV/Daybreak
29% of respondents said they had awoken to find the co-pilot asleep. Credit: ITV/Daybreak
49% of the pilots questioned said tiredness is the biggest safety threat. Credit: ITV/Daybreak

'No surprise' both pilots fell asleep at same time

UK pilots' organisation Balpa said last month's incident "comes as no surprise", adding that it had "repeatedly warned the CAA of the risk of both pilots falling asleep, including in a letter to each member of the CAA board last year".

Balpa general secretary Jim McAuslan said: "British pilots want to make every flight a safe flight and tiredness is the biggest challenge they face.

"As the regulator responsible for UK flight safety, the CAA has been far too complacent about the levels of tiredness among British pilots and failing to acknowledge the scale of the under-reported problem.

"In fact, the CAA and Government are backing EU cuts to UK flight safety that will increase tiredness among pilots and the risk of dangerous incidents."

The CAA said today: "We understand that Balpa are not happy with the proposals but we think overall it is a good package and not much different to what we have now."

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