US 'Friendly Fire' Pilots' Stimulant Use Examined
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Two U.S. F-16 pilots charged with manslaughter in the April "friendly fire" bombing of Canadian troops in Afghanistan that killed four soldiers routinely took amphetamines that may have impaired their judgment, a lawyer for one of the men said on Thursday.
They also say the Air Force forced the pilots to use the stimulant "go pills" because they kept the pilots on an erratic schedule, flying missions some days and some nights, and did not tell them about a warning from manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline, about the use of the drug, Dexedrine.
"The manufacturer specifically counsels doctors to tell patients they should not operate heavy machinery or engage in potentially hazardous activities while using this drug. No pilot was ever told that," said Charles Gittins, a former Marine Corps pilot and lawyer who is representing Schmidt.
When I see "heavy machinery" warnings, I never really think of F16s. I will now.