NEW DELHI: Concerned over rising instances of abuse of psychoactive substances, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation DGCA) has for the first time proposed to introduce regulation for examination of aviation personnel, including cabin crew and pilots, for consumption of psychoactive substance like cannabis, opioids and their variants.
Random tests will be carried out under the DGCA supervision at major airports in the country. Officials said the tests will cover 10% employees of each organisation in a period of one year and for the testing, urine samples will be taken. In the first phase, flight crew members and air traffic controllers will be subjected to the examination for the consumption of psychoactive substance at six airports —Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad.
The examination would consist of screening and confirmatory tests. The screening test will be carried out at the airport or the ATC complex, as the case may be, and will be recorded on the video. If a person is found positive in the screening test, then the confirmatory test will be carried out.If any person is found positive in the screening test he/she will be removed from safety sensitive duties till the results of the confirmatory test are received.
If the confirmatory test is also positive, the person will be subjected to rehabilitation and will return to active duties after having undergone the tests for the consumption of the psychoactive substance, clearance by treating psychiatrist and the certification by the Chief Medical Officer of the concerned organisation.
If, after return to safety-sensitive duties, a person again tests positive, his/her licence will be cancelled.