BALPA EMERGENCY:  +44 (0) 208476 4099

IFALPA EMERGENCY: +44 (0) 1202 653110



Comply with the orders of the police. If they start to ask you questions, politely advise them that you do not want to make any statements until you have consulted with a lawyer.

If compelled to make a statement limit your responses to name, airline, nationality, place of work, place of residence and ask them to contact the British Embassy and inform them that you have been arrested.

In the UK you have the right to remain silent.

Do not sign anything without legal representation.

If, in the UK, you are approached by anyone purporting to be acting as an agent of the AAIB then you should call the AAIB 24 hour helpline to confirm their identity before answering any questions.

UK AAIB: +44 (0) 1252 512299


Please note

  • Call BALPA (or IFALPA if unable to contact BALPA) on the numbers above as soon as you are able.

  • Following an accident or serious incident you may not be in a fit mental or physical state to answer questions. If required, request that any interviews are delayed until a later time.

  • Remember ANY statement you make mayend up being used in a court of law.

  • For non-emergency employment related matters BALPA members are advised to contact their Company Council or National Officer. For items of a more personal nature, members can use the Pilot Advisory Group (PAG) as a confidential counselling service - pilotsadvisorygroup@balpa.org




Discharge your responsibilities to ensure the safety of your passengers and crew. Follow company procedures with respect to pulling the circuit breakers of recorders in order to preserve evidence.



Secure the aircraft so that removal or interference with its contents is only permitted to authorised officials (the AAIB in the UK, police or customs).

Endeavour to ensure that the accident site is secured.



Follow company procedures and notify your appropriate company personnel who should contact the local government authority on your behalf. In the UK, it is the responsibility of the aircraft commander to give information without delay to the Chief Inspector of Accidents but this may be delegated to your company.



Keep your crew together if possible and obtain rest facilities away from the scene. Advise crew members of your intended actions and keep them informed.



You may be required to comply with drug and/or alcohol testing procedures. If there is any doubt in regard to the result, ensure that you insist on retaining a duplicate sample for independent analysis. Note that in the UK, outside of random testing via the ramp inspection programme or company schemes, it is only the police that can conduct such tests.


Make no statement to the media or take part in any press conference without discussing with BALPA beforehand.


You must produce your flying licence if required by a regulatory authority or law enforcement official for examination. You should not allow that official to retain the licence. A formal set of procedures must be followed before you can be required to relinquish your licence.


Consider carefully the wisdom of continuing to operate further flights. The stress factor and preoccupation with the occurrence must not be underestimated. Automatic suspension or relief from duty is usually a company requirement pending the investigation.


If possible, obtain copies of all original documents and copies of recorded interviews, whether paper or electronic, relating to the flight and retain them for your use only.

 STEP 10

Prepare all written statements with the help of your BALPA representative and/or legal counsel, and consider carefully authorising any circulation beyond the official accident investigator.

 STEP 11

If required to make statements in the absence of specific BALPA advice confine them to factual evidence, without speculative amplification, in the language of your choice. Before agreeing to make any statement consider your mental state and level of fatigue. If required, request that any interviews are delayed until a later time.



Parts of the aircraft structure and its contents such as man made mineral fibres or dangerous goods may be extremely hazardous after fracture or fire.