FAA suspends controller for watching movie on duty
WASHINGTON (KABC) -- There is renewed scrutiny on Tuesday on air traffic controllers after another is suspended. This time, it was for watching a movie while working.
The Federal Aviation Administration said the incident happened at a regional radar facility near Cleveland. A controller there was caught watching a DVD when he was supposed to be monitoring air traffic.
The controller's microphone was inadvertently activated, transmitting the audio of the movie - the 2007 crime thriller "Cleaner," starring Samuel L. Jackson - for more than three minutes to all the planes in the airspace that the controller was supposed to be monitoring, the agency said.
The controller's microphone became stuck in the transmit position, preventing him from hearing incoming radio calls or issuing instructions to planes during the incident, the agency said.
Both the controller and a manager have been suspended.
So far this year, there have been more than a half dozen suspensions of controllers caught sleeping on the job. In all, the FAA has suspended eight controllers and supervisors since late March.
Some changes are already in the works to try and deal with scheduling and fatigue issues. FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt says he will do whatever is needed to ensure safety in the skies.
"The bottom line is we won't tolerate this, period," Babbitt said.
The FAA just announced controllers are now required to have nine hours off between shifts instead of eight. Managers will also now work more early morning and late night hours.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
airport news, airport security, national news
- 1 shot, killed at North Hills nursing facility 24 min ago
- Santa Ana jewelry store robbery caught on cam
- Nelson Mandela mourners pay last respects
- Pope Francis named Time's Person of the Year
- Man arrested in 'revenge porn' website case
- Bell moving forward after Spaccia conviction
- Auto thefts up in CA after realignment -study
- Budget deal: Liberals, conservatives grumbling
- abcnews: Woman claws way out of locked bathroom
- Ukraine police stand down after protest grows
- Mega Millions jackpot to soar to $400 million
- Paul Walker crash: 2nd theft suspect surrenders
- SAG Awards: '12 Years a Slave' leads noms
- OTRC: Demi Lovato's cocaine, alcohol confessions