Last week, Northwest Flight 188 blew past its destination by over 160km and didn't respond to air traffic control for 75 minutes, prompting panic. Most guessed the pilots fell asleep. Now it appears they were messing around on laptops.
It's come out of interviews with the NTSB that the still-suspended pilots now claim the mishap happened while they were on their laptops, talking about their work schedules. It wasn't until a flight attendant called up the pilots five minutes before their scheduled landing time to ask about about an ETA that they realised how far off-course they were. While the WSJ says pulling out a laptop is not unheard of, it's against Delta's company policy, according to their latest statement about the incident. That must've been some conversation — the only thing I can think of on a computer that would prompt a conversation that long would be boobs or baby-back rib recipes. And only one of those is worth making a flight over an hour late. [WSJ via TBI]