Ethiopian Airlines Bans ET343 Flight Crew, Pending Investigations

ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopian Airlines said it has removed crew from its operation after pilots, performing flight ET-343, allegedly fell asleep and temporarily lost communication with Addis Ababa Air Traffic Control.

The plane was en route from Khartoum to Addis Ababa but lost communication when reaching their destination on 15 August 2022.

The autopiloted aircraft reportedly continued along the flight management system route set up for an approach to runway 25L at Addis Ababa airport without descending.

The Air Traffic Control tried to contact the crew numerous times without success, the Aviation Herald reported, alleging that the pilots were asleep.

After the autopilot disengaged, the disconnect wailer woke the crew up who then maneuvered the aircraft for a safe landing about 25 minutes after overflying the runway.

The airlines today confirmed the incident, which will be a subject of further investigation.

“The concerned Crew have been removed from operation pending further investigation,” the airlines said.

“Appropriate corrective action will be taken based on the outcome of the investigation. Safety has always been and will continue to be our first priority,” it added.

The aircraft, after staying on the ground for about 2.5 hours, departed for its next flight.