Fighter jets scramble for ITA Airways Airbus A330 after brief loss of communication

On 1 May, an ITA Airways (former Alitalia) Airbus A330-200 (registered EI-EJP) operated flight AZ609 between New York JFK, United States and Rome Fiumicino, Italy. The crew, however, didn’t report to Marseille Center for about 10 minutes. Fighter aircraft were dispatched but the crew finally began to communicate again with air traffic control. The aircraft continued to Rome for a safe landing. reveals that Italian media reported that the airline dismissed the captain after an internal investigation into the occurrence. The airline stated the captain showed a behaviour inconsistent with the behavioural and working rules as well as showed a discrepancy in his interviews and the facts established by the investigation.

At the time of the occurrence the first officer was taking an approved nap, however, the commander also fell asleep at the controls, but in his interviews claimed there had been a problem with the communication devices. The investigation found no fault with the communication systems. The aircraft had been flying on autopilot, so that the occurrence did not pose any danger to the aircraft or its occupants.

Source: Incident: ITA A332 over France on May 1st 2022, temporary losscom

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