Defence: pilot's actions prudent
The lawyer defending a Pacific Blue pilot charged with careless operation of a Sydney-bound passenger jet today said the captain's actions were considered, prudent and reasonable.
The Papakura pilot, 54, who has interim name suppression, appeared before Judge Kevin Phillips in the Queenstown District Court charged with operating a Boeing 737 in a careless manner on June 22, 2010, a charge laid by the Civil Aviation Authority.
Defence lawyer Matthew Muir cross-examined CAA general manager of airlines Mark Hughes about cloud ceiling readings, anti-ice requirements on takeoff and cross winds.
Company rules said aircraft should not takeoff when cross winds were greater than 16 knots.
Mr Muir said there was no dancing on the rudder pedals, the first officer estimated cross winds of 12 or 13 knots and the captain monitored the weather for 90 minutes before takeoff.
''He (the captain) is better qualified than most to make that sort of assessment, his decision to delay departure on account of cross winds indicates he was live to the issue and not at all cavalier about it.''
The hearing continues.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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