Japanese Transport Ministry Calls Out ANA After Pilot Alcohol Incident - Simple Flying


Yesterday, Japan’s Ministry of Transportation issued a “business improvement order” to major national carrier All Nippon Airways. This follows an incident where one of its pilots consumed alcohol before a flight last November, causing a delay of over 70 minutes.

ANA orders more from Boeing
The incident took place on 7 November before a flight from Tokyo Haneda to Fukuoka. Photo: BriYYZ via Wikimedia Commons

Incident details

According to Japanese news site Japan Today, the incident in question took place on November 7th, 2019. It was on that day, at Tokyo Haneda Airport, that an ANA pilot was found to have been drinking alcohol prior to boarding a flight bound for Fukuoka.

Because of his actions, he had to be replaced by a colleague. This caused the delay of four flights. One flight, in particular, was delayed by as much as 73 minutes. In total, 2,000 travelers were affected by the actions of one pilot.


The employee in question was dismissed the following month.

ANA flight attendant
ANA forbids any of their crew to drink less than 24 hours before their next shift. Photo: ANA

A serious offense

Japan Today notes that this is the first time ANA has been handed a “business improvement order” with regards to alcohol consumption by crew members. The order is considered the ministry’s third-most serious type of punishment, below