Psychologist: Lack of Sleep Caused Pilot's Meltdown
Deprivation behind Clayton Osbon's 'brief psychotic disorder,' he testified
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 11, 2012 3:12 AM CDT
Updated Jul 11, 2012 4:31 AM CDT
Osbon was found not guilty of interfering with a flight crew by reason of insanity.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – The JetBlue pilot who had a bizarre in-flight meltdown earlier this year was seriously short on sleep, a psychologist testified, according to a court transcript obtained by the AP. The neuropsychologist told Clayton Osbon's trial that the pilot had "a brief psychotic disorder" due to lack of sleep. The disorder lasted for about a week, according to the psychologist, who said Osbon suffered from delusions "secondary to sleep deprivation." He didn't specify how long the pilot might have gone without sleep for.

Osbon, who was locked out of the cockpit and restrained after he started ranting about religion and terrorists, was found not guilty by reason of insanity last week and is currently at a mental health facility. New FAA rules taking effect next year require pilots to have a 10-hour rest period, including eight hours of uninterrupted sleep opportunity. The rules currently require pilots to have at least eight hours of rest, but don't factor in sleep opportunity.

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