Jun 20, 2017

Interesting Psak: Yichud among pilots

Ever since PM Benjamin Netanyahu publicized the existence of the first female Haredi pilot last week, I have seen much discussion online about whether or nto she should really be considered Haredi, and if there is a problem with yichud in the pilots cabin when flying a plane.

People just don't take well to anybody who does things a little differently than the average.

Anyways, someone asked Rav Aviner about it, and because the topic is interesting, I'll share it here..

According to what is reported on Srugim, Rav Aviner responded to the query by saying that a similar question was asked about a private plane that was being rented to take a female passenger somewhere. Rav Asher Weiss said there is no yichud because they will not come to any "hanky panky" as the pilot has to focus on flying the plane and if he gets drawn away from that the plane will surely crash.

Rav Aviner says that in a large plane, even more so it is not a problem. In a large plane there are stewards and stewardesses going into the cabin. And even with auto-pilot, the pilot still has to be alert and focused and ready to take over the controls at any moment.

Rav Aviner concludes with an anecdote of how he once answered a similar question on a halachic program for the army. He was asked about a pilot with a religious female navigator being yichud. He says he answered then that it is not yichud (though he says there were other problems, though he does not specify). After the fact he was called by a reporter asking how he can answer army questions as a civilian. He responded that he is discussing theoretical questions, not practical, so it is ok, though he says after that he stopped answering army-related question and directs them to the IDF Rabbinate..


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  1. Isn't it a pretty straightforward Gemara/Mishnah? The pilots are involved in their work. The end.

  2. Far east airlines videotape the cockpit. El al probably does for security reasons. And I wouldn't be surprised other airlines do. Especially nowadays with crazy passengers, security, etc. (Though I would add crazy flight attendants.)

    1. Last two sentences referring to passenger cabin.

  3. the cockpit is locked and the flight attendants are not getting in. so it should be yichud. also they have automatic pilot so a lot of hanky panky could be going on there.


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