Female pilot who saved passenger’s life describes challenges in cockpit
Aslı Barış - ISTANBULA pioneering woman pilot in Turkey, Ebru Ünsal, who saved a passenger’s life on Nov. 6, has related the challenges of being a woman pilot to daily Hürriyet.
Pilots are physically exhausted by their occupation, she said.
“We are physically exhausted. It is very tiring. High altitude, radiation and pressure are consuming us. There’s also barotrauma and the attrition of visceral organs… We are struggling with dropsy and periods that are different from men. For example, I struggled with a gallstone issue out of the blue. So women who are doing this job pay a greater price than men,” she said.
Ünsal said being a pilot was her father’s dream and that she has not received any negative reaction over her job.
“Obviously, I have never received a negative reaction. They express shock rather than a negative reaction. Everyone is asking how I started doing this job,” she said.
She also said her most recent company employed almost 200 women pilots versus 6,000 male pilots.
“I have no boyfriend. I cannot find one because I’m perpetually in the air. I cannot even attend any social event. I cannot meet with new people. My working hours do not fit anybody’s working hours,” she said.
Ünsal saved the life of a passenger who had suffered a heart attack on Nov. 6 while they were flying from Hamburg to Istanbul. The passenger was taken to hospital after she landed the plane immediately.