Airline Pilot Arrested On Alcohol Charge

By: CBS/AP
By: CBS/AP
United Airlines First Officer Was Set To Fly From London To San Francisco When Taken Into Custody At Heathrow.

**FILE** In this July 31, 2006 file photo, a United Airlines plane leaves San Francisco International Airport. United Airlines said Wednesday, June 4, 2008, that it's cutting up to 1,100 more jobs, removing 100 fuel-guzzling airplanes from its fleet and slashing domestic capacity as it tries to cope with spiraling fuel prices. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, file)

(CBS/AP) United Airlines says one of its pilots has been arrested by police for being over the legal alcohol limit.

The airline says the first officer was due to join the crew of flight 955 from London's Heathrow Airport to San Francisco when he was arrested early Sunday morning. London's Metropolitan Police say the pilot was arrested following a breath test but has since been bailed.

The Sun, a British newspaper, reported that the 44-year-old American pilot was marched off the flight by cops as passengers looked on.

"We couldn’t believe what we were seeing. The pilot was frog-marched off the aircraft," the newspaper quoted one unidentified passenger as saying.

The Sun said police acted on a tip from the ground crew.

United said Monday that the man - whose name was not given - was one of three pilots due to fly the plane to the United States.

It says he has been removed from service and that the company is investigating the incident.

The legal limit for pilots is nine micrograms of alcohol in 100 milliliters of breath.

© MMVIII, CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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