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Airlines impose cannabis ban on pilots and cabin crew

Air Canada, WestJet and Jazz are among the carriers that have imposed a blanket ban on cannabis use for many employees directly involved in flight operations as Transport Canada warns that cannabis is a “potential threat” to aviation safety. ( More...

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canuck44 7
A whole new industry will spring up. Cannibis can be detected by various means often up to weeks after its use. The problem comes from not having any standards to measure impairment and in fact very little data on measuring impairment. Many of the tests are time consuming and not suitable for field testing.

This will leave no other choice other than zero tolerance until standards are set and testing methods are perfected. Of course the lawyers will declare some tests are delivering false positives. I am quite happy with zero tolerance in many areas which we will see in weeks to follow those imposed on transportation workers.
bentwing60 3
I have encountered more contra indicated drug prescriptions in my immediate circle than positives or false positives in my entire drug & alcohol tested aviation career. Including my extended aviation community. too wit, klonopin, to known alcoholics. Pot won't kill nearly as many people as the pharmaceutical industry. Opioids in the Obama era anyone.
dee9bee 3
Exactly what is new here, at least regarding airline crews? Nothing that I can see. Weed stays in your system for a month, at least so I'm told. I vacationed in Cuzco, Peru in my flying days, elevation 11,000 feet. On check in at the hotel I was offered a cup of coca tea to offset the effects of the high altitude and I was afraid to drink it. Maybe I should have, as it took a few days to get over the altitude sickness...
matt jensen 3
You could have chewed on the leaves - it clears your system about same time as the tea - three days.
dee9bee 3
Well, I was advised to eat lightly my first night so I unwisely chose a lukewarm egg salad sandwich from a local deli. Yep, three days is just about right, one way or the other.
Cindy Savage 2
This issue is already being addressed by departments of public safety in states where marijuana is legalized already. Yes, marijuana stays in your system for 30 days. No, only a certain level in a certain time frame makes you intoxicated. In ERs across the country, we deal far more often with people who are using synthetic marijuana. It doesn't make you "pop" a drug test. It is far worse than marijuana, imo. Agitation, syncope and catatonic behavior, elevated BP and pulse-that is the "high" of synthetic marijuana. The people using it are also in high risk jobs. So, sure, the airline industry is having to rely on pilots who did not come from the military. Those lifelong civilian pilots may not have the conservative and antidrug mindset of an ex-military pilot. I would prefer the airline industry approach the marijuana issue realistically instead of how the oil and gas industry deals with it, by pretending drug testing "prevents" a problem. And, BTW, this ER doc is ex-military so no squacking about unfair portrayals. As for docs and pot, do not get me started. The quarterly newsletter from the medical board always lists dozens losing their licenses over alcohol abuse. Pot is the least of their problems.
Ed Merriam 1
reminds me of how heroin surged after drug testing became widespread in the 80s, since it clears the system much faster than cannabis
Stupid rule. No hangover with cannabis. What's the problem?
JJ Johnson 4
The lawsuits will stack up like cord wood. Drink your booze. Pop your pills. But God forbid you smoke that devil lettuce on your off duty time and it is in your piss. Impairment and Marijuana in your piss is an apple and a bowling ball. Banning a legal substance (Marijuana)in off duty time while allowing you to have a beer or pop pills with a prescription will not stand legal scrutiny. It will fail in court. It is hypocritical discrimination. Reefer madness ignorance is still alive and well. Test for impairment. Not piss left overs. The employers will lose this battle.
btweston 2
Fear is a hell of a drug.
kurt brunken 1
So pilots cant use a legal drug in Canada, but school bus drivers can? Oh for the days when people could live with a little pain.
Edward Bardes 1
It would be a good idea to research the effect of cannabis on pilots as thoroughly as possible as quickly as possible.
Ant Miraa 0
how about no drug impairment?
They are already flying high
Wow! The new reality begins. Let's see how long it takes the medical profession to follow.
Jesse Carroll 1
Would you feel safer with a suicidal pilot or Cheek and Chong? Just saying!
joel wiley 1
Perhaps we could inquire of the organizations that have been involved in drug use and flying for decades. What are the Cartel policies on drug use for their international delivery pilots? They would be the subject matter experts.
ian mcdonell 0
I for one am very happy with this ban and hope that it becomes world wide asap
Yep. You for one.
AAaviator 0
Nope, I'm with Ian. Check your math!
Andre Amaral 0
Me too!
Cade foster -1
The druggies are not going to be happy.
linbb -7
HO HUM troll go post somewhere else.
Well that will certainly help the calling. I personally want my crew members to be sober.
Don Whyte -2
Sounds sensible to me...there will be many such rulings as the dust settles over time in this stupid issue. Personally I have no interest in going anywhere near the foul reeking shit and I suspect many others are also disgusted with the easy access to it. There will be many people who will be enticed to use it. Especially young people, sadly whose brains aren't fully developed and vulnerable to the negative effects of this drug.
Tim Pacan 6
There are many cannabis variations. The medicinal possibilities are endless. THC in the drug is what gets you high, CBD is the medicinal part. YOu can request low THC and high CBD content for medicinal use, and you dont get the "high". I have 3 fractured discs which cannot be repaired, and 24 hour pain as a result. The doctor's answer is addictive opioid painkillers. Or CBD is much better on my body and does not impair me like the oxycontin and morphine that the doctors prescribe.
The peopel who want to get high have had cannabis for a long time, illegally. Now that it is legal their numbers wont change much, but the medicinal use has opened up a lot of possibilities and relief for many people.
I don't like it, but why do you assume that goes hand in hand with being disgusted by availability? I'm all for other people having access to it and detectability is not related to impairment.


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