Two pilots were fired Tuesday after the pair took photos with a beautiful model — while the plane was in flight.
Vicky Xipolitakis posted photos of herself in the cockpit with the two fired pilots on June 24. The photos, which were taken during a flight from Buenos Aires to Rosario, were Tweeted to Xipolitakis’ nearly 400,000 followers. Xipolitakis is an actress and model known on Twitter for posting “seductive photos,” according to Yahoo! Travel.
The pilots who were fired were previously employed by Aerolineas Argentinas. Shortly after the photos of the pilots were discovered, Aerolineas Argentinas President Mariano Recalde spoke to the local media, saying that the pilots were reckless.
“As soon as we became aware of the situation, we dismissed the pilots. They are two irresponsible people.”
For her part in the incident, Xipolitakis was banned from flying with the airlines for five years.
The official statement from the airlines read, “In relation to the events that took place during the Austral flight 2708 on Monday June 22, Aerolineas Argentinas and Austral state that the pilots Patricio Zocchi Molina and Federico Matias Soaje were removed from their activities on this day and will be dismissed as well as the rest of the staff with responsibility in this event… the passenger will be prevented from flying for five years on Aerolineas and Austral flights by virtue of the right of admission available to the company.”
According to Mashable, Xipolitakis spent the majority of the flight in the cockpit with the fired pilots and took six videos. One of the videos can be seen below, with the model and the fired pilots speaking in Spanish.
According to IMDb, Xipolitakis is an actress and TV personality known for her roles in Bailando por un sueño, Caiga quien caiga (aka CQC), and Am, Antes del mediodía. Mashable reports that Xipolitakis has posed in the Greek version of Playboy.
The pilots who were fired are just the most recent in a string of pilots who have taken selfie shots while in flight — though these two pilots were the first to be fired. According to Yahoo! Travel, earlier this month a Japanese pilot was suspended after the pilot took a photo in the cockpit with a flight attendant.
In addition, Yahoo! Travel reported that Civil Aviation Department looked into a selfie of a woman sitting in the cockpit during a flight from Taipei to Hong Kong.
According to documents from the Uganda Civil Aviation Authority, “A pilot-in-command shall ensure that in the interest of safety admission to the cockpit does not cause distraction to the flight crew or interfere with the flight’s operations; and all persons carried in the cockpit are made familiar with the relevant safety procedures.”
Most civil aviation departments have similar regulations, including that of Argentina.
Do you think the airlines made the right decision when they fired the pilots?
[Photo courtesy of Vicky Xipolitakis on Twitter]