Last updated: 10:30 AM ET, Mon June 15 2015

Japan Airlines Pilot Suspended for Cockpit Selfie with Stewardess

Impacting Travel | Donald Wood | June 15, 2015

Japan Airlines Pilot Suspended for Cockpit Selfie with Stewardess

Japan Airlines is one of the largest airlines in Japan, but the company is under scrutiny after an image of a pilot taking a selfie with a flight attendant in the cockpit of one of its aircrafts surfaced online.

According to Kiyotaka Matsuda of, the 47-year-old pilot brought the 28-year-old stewardess into the cockpit on a June 7 flight from northern Japan to Osaka when the co-pilot had left to use the bathroom and the two snapped a few photos together.

After the airline found out about the incident, the company immediately suspended the pilot for violating flight regulations that state pilots must be vigilant at all times while in mid-flight, especially after the recent Germanwings tragedy.

While the pilot taking a selfie with a flight attendant sounds like harmless fun, the situation lends itself to possible issues. If the pilot is focused on the stewardess, his mind is not on flying to plane and keeping it safe.

The scrutiny has increased in the months since a pilot on Germanwings Flight 9525 allegedly locked the other captain out of the cockpit on March 24 and crashed the aircraft into a mountainside on purpose, killing all 150 people on board.

In the fallout from the tragedy, many airlines are requiring two eligible airline employees be in the cockpit at the same time to avoid a similar situation. While it is unclear what Japan Airlines’ requirements are specifically, one assumes mid-flight selfies are frowned upon.

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