IndiGo, India’s largest airline by market share and fleet size, after numerous instances of feedback around the fatigue that their pilots claim to undergo, is instituting a new fatigue management tool, albeit on a trial basis.
IndiGo’s new Fatigue Management Tool from Thales
IndiGo will partner with French aerospace major Thales Group as an early adopter of their Fatigue Analysis Tool. As part of this fatigue measurement exercise, IndiGo’s pilots will have to wear a wrist gadget, which will help detect pilots’ alertness and fatigue levels before and after flights. IndiGo operates around 1,900 flights daily, with more than 4,000 pilots doing up to four take-offs and landings daily.
In a press note, IndiGo said,
This initiative is to develop a fatigue detection model that offers detailed insights into demographic data, including routes, pairings, crew profiles, and more, going beyond traditional scheduling-focused biomathematical models. The program will use real-time data, historical information, and predictive analytics, with all data collected being de-identified. We remain committed to our pilots’ well-being, ensuring their health and mental well-being, ultimately enhancing passenger safety.
In an internal communication to pilots, the airlines informed that they have engaged with global organisations focused on areas such as sleep science and the impact of duty schedules for pilots in the past year.
Attention has been drawn to the issue of pilot fatigue following the tragic death of an IndiGo pilot. The pilot collapsed and passed away at the boarding gate of Nagpur airport recently. The pilot was preparing to operate a flight from Nagpur to Pune. While no conclusive evidence links this death to fatigue, it brought the focus back to the issue.
It has been announced that the airline will conduct a proof-of-concept trial for its technology-driven interface to assess pilot alertness levels over the next few months. Once completed, they will collectively evaluate the efficacy and accuracy of the data. Here is a look at how the device works.
Under the program, selected flight patterns will be analysed. Pilots will be informed of these patterns through suitable means. Pilots will voluntarily use the Thales ground device to assess their alertness level, taking a maximum of 5 minutes pre-flight and post-flight. Ground devices will be installed in Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai.
IndiGo, India’s largest airline, will try to track pilot fatigue, powered by a new wrist gadget from Thales. Pilots in Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai will be the first ones to go through the fatigue detection technique, and then IndiGo might roll it out more widely.
What do you make of IndiGo’s attempts to track down pilot fatigue?
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