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Old 2nd Apr 2012, 23:00   #161 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Pacific
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I know I have a bee in my bonnet about airport security, but someone trying to break into the flight deck, and, according to the FO as it was reported, this chap almost managed it.

The US administration has just announced they are vitually shutting down the armed pilot scheme, and with so few air marshals, there will be little available on board the airplanes to protect them from anybody who is determined to take over the airplane.

The argument is that with locked cockpit doors, and the 100 percent effective airport security in operation, there is no need to maintain the program.

Of course, in this case, the captain might have been the armed pilot so there is no standard answer, but to my mind it highlights the futility of the airport security. There have been a few incidents lately on the airplanes, and none of them were prevented, or could have been prevented, by airport security. If we put all our trust is a program that does not work, has never worked, and can never work, we are all out of our collective minds.

Bravo to the FO in this case, he responded well to the threat, and more importantly, he recognised the threat in time.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 01:45   #162 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Any word on Mr. Dowd's career prior to JetBlue? That name is naggingly familiar.
Quote:
I read where he had flown a Gulfstream for NetJets, but can't attest to the accuracy of the media's reports..

Looks like he's now out of the hospital...
Jason Dowd is the FO, never flew Gulfstreams for NetJets, didn't go to the hospital.

A brief profile of Mr. Dowd is in this article:

JetBlue co-pilot hailed as a hero - The Washington Post

Quote:
ahh, the good old USA "Justice" system

the guy clearly has some serious mental health issues, so they slap him in jail. Bravo.What a backward country.
Sounds like your green card application was denied.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 02:16   #163 (permalink)
 
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"Sounds like your green card application was denied." Huh?

Personally, I think that he makes a very good point.

2247 posts in 11 years...Sounds like someone has a rather fond opinion of himself.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 02:28   #164 (permalink)
 
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Quite right!

In the U.K. one assumes that he would be released into 'care in the community,' where he would fit right in. Do you suppose that he just picked the wrong country in which to go a bit ga-ga? How would you see this handled in the U.K.?

I assume that once he bounces around a bit inside our American justice system he will be judged 'not guilty by reason of insanity,' and sent off to some secure facility for a while. After all, if he really wanted to do great harm then he could simply have overpowered his FO and then crashed the aircraft. That has happened in the past.

It's really very sad, I think, for such a senior guy to lose it so completely. I hope we get some answers to how this could happen, when the best thing, not that it's really anything but terrible, would be to be told that there was some sort of physical reason for his breakdown.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 02:43   #165 (permalink)
 
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He probably will never fly again but all people have a breaking point. I hope he finds peace in his next profession. He sounds like a great guy that flipped out and can't fly any more.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 04:20   #166 (permalink)
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Quote:
He sounds like a great guy that flipped out and can't fly any more.
Who says that he can't fly anymore?

I see a lot of folks on here placing this colleague of ours in a box very close to the nutters who plot and plan to take over an aircraft and do damage.
Even from reading the sensationalist news-crap that has been linked on here, it is easy to work out that this was not the case.

There is nothing to substantiate anything that has been said so far about the reason for this man's actions.
The doctors will decide.

A mental breakdown, maybe.
But it could also be something like a contaminant or a virus, which may not be the career breaker that you have so casually placed on him.
Why knock the poor guy down even further than he already is?

Can you imagine if it was you?
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 05:08   #167 (permalink)
 
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ahh, the good old USA "Justice" system

the guy clearly has some serious mental health issues, so they slap him in jail. Bravo.What a backward country.
I never cease to be amazed at the depths to which the US justice system can plunge to. Mind you, a country with one of the highest crime rates on the planet and 10 times the number of people in jail per capita than any other country, clearly has a messed up system.
10 times? Soooooo where do you get your information from? Probably pulled it out the same place your head has been eh? Granted I am not a big fan of it neither (our justice system) however you really should try to temper your outbursts with a dose of reality. Now what do you say we get this thread back on track.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 06:13   #168 (permalink)
 
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Actually it's about six times the international median rate. The USA has a prison population of about 751 per 100,000 citizens. The median rate for the rest of the world is 125. The UK, for example, is 151. None of this is really relevant in this topic.

Some details here: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/23/wo...pagewanted=all

However, I have to say I was another one to be shocked that the pilot in question is facing criminal charges rather than getting medical/mental help.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 11:52   #169 (permalink)
 
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My mistake, I thought he was asking about the captain...
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 14:37   #170 (permalink)
 
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Jeez, it's enough to give him a second breakdown. Are they serious? I hope he gets the very best lawyer in the USA.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 15:06   #171 (permalink)
 
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The guy was arrested by the FBI because there aren't any FAA police. The FBI took him for a medical evaluation before they charged him. It will take some time before we learn what the conclusion of that evaluation was and why the FBI decided to charge him.

None of us were there so we really don't know the nature of his outburst. Everyone assumes he is suffering from mental illness. Perhaps the FBI determined some other reason for his outburst, thus the arrest. None of us know.

Then, there is the issue if this is a mental illness did it just occur or did the captain know about it and was having it treated on the "QT" so he could avoid reporting on his FAA six month medical application? If that turns out to be the case that is a different felony, that would probably result in a new criminal filing and, if found guilty by a jury, a couple of years of prison time.

If, in fact, the outburst was the result of a previously unknown medical condition that would cause a sudden and severe psychotic outburst, the guy will likely not be brought to trial and, if so, surely not convicted. In fact, if that is the case the charges will probably be dropped. But, there is a lot of evaluation and investigation that first needs to take place. It is not an easy matter to determine whether he was being treated on the QT and thus committing fraud on his 6 month FAA medical application.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 16:21   #172 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
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Quote:
ahh, the good old USA "Justice" system

the guy clearly has some serious mental health issues, so they slap him in jail. Bravo.What a backward country.
I never cease to be amazed at the depths to which the US justice system can plunge to. Mind you, a country with one of the highest crime rates on the planet and 10 times the number of people in jail per capita than any other country, clearly has a messed up system.
While in sad, depressing, socialist Europe people (RIGHTLY) complain all the time about the Justice system being too soft and the police being ineffective when it's needed most...

In the US the number of people in jail per capita is higher because the system works much better and quicker and criminals DO GO to jail and, most importantly, DO STAY there for a good chunk of their conviction.

IMNSHO, the USA are, overall, the greatest country on Earth. By far.

Signed, an Italian who has relatives in Germany and France, who has traveled all over Europe, who has lived in the USA and who has been an expat in every continent but Africa.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 16:50   #173 (permalink)
 
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Glad FO took action

I have heard that with some airlines / cultures there is a very strong reluctance among flight deck second-in-commands to question, correct, or overrule the first-in-command even if safety is being compromised. I'm glad this first officer took the action that he did.

One part of this story that intrigues me is the first officer arranging for an off duty pilot to join him on the flight deck for the balance of the flight. Is it common practice for the crew up front to be informed of other flight deck crew on board and where they are seated? This seems like a good policy - an extension of prudent resource management in a way.

As for the pilot's treatment through the US medical and justice system, the fact that he was in a hospital for several days prior to his first court appearance suggests to me that an evaluation was made regarding his motivations and his longer term mental state. I sure hope that where ever he is detained or allowed to reside in the short term he continues to receive the best possible medical care. At risk of revealing my bias, I do wonder if he would have been treated differently had his airplane landed in California rather than Texas.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 17:15   #174 (permalink)
 
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FCeng84:

Quote:
At risk of revealing my bias, I do wonder if he would have been treated differently had his airplane landed in California rather than Texas.


I would think the FBI would march to the same orders whether in Texas or California.
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 18:04   #175 (permalink)
 
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At risk of revealing my bias, I do wonder if he would have been treated differently had his airplane landed in California rather than Texas.
I think the FBI even operates in California.

Quote:
None of us were there so we really don't know the nature of his outburst. Everyone assumes he is suffering from mental illness. Perhaps the FBI determined some other reason for his outburst, thus the arrest. None of us know.
Absolutely. As we've discussed above, things like meningitus, brain tumors and side effects from drugs and supplements have in the past caused sudden aberrant behavior.

Quote:
It is not an easy matter to determine whether he was being treated on the QT and thus committing fraud on his 6 month FAA medical application.
And that points out the 'Catch 22' of a pilot seeking help for mental issues. If you don't seek help, things may get worse until you commit an act that can put yourself and others at risk. If you get help and the feds find out, you are probably grounded and perhaps facing criminal charges if you didn't disclose the treatment. Like everything else with the feds, a lot depends on how things are documented, e.g. was it 'counseling' or 'treatment' and was a diagnosis recorded?

In recent years the FAA Aeromedical folks have been cross checking disability payments, armed forces medical discharges and other records to catch folks who claim to be disabled for pay purposes but healthy for flying.

One of the guys who got caught lying on his FAA medical application while drawing Social Security disability pay tried to sue the government for violating his privacy since he is HIV positive. He was unsuccessful:

Supreme Court limits damages in HIV-infected pilot's case
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 21:41   #176 (permalink)
 
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'and the 100 percent effective airport security in operation'

Sorry if the typing is rubbish but I've just has to pick myself up from the floor....
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Old 3rd Apr 2012, 23:20   #177 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overun View Post
l wonder about the sobriety of the passengers who flung themselves on

the legal Captain, and instantly flung him to the ground.

Cattle class may have gone too far.

ls it possible to drink and drugs test the fat arsed pikie bast*rds prior

to boarding ?
He was no longer the "legal Captain". The First Officer had assumed command because the Captain was incapacitated. His his training and duty would have given him no other choice. I believe he also made a PA instructing the Cabin Crew and passengers to restrain him.

Last edited by Lost in Saigon; 3rd Apr 2012 at 23:34.
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Old 4th Apr 2012, 04:30   #178 (permalink)
 
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I was just reading earlier this this week that polydipsia (excessive water consumption) is not uncommon is patients with schizophrenia. Of course, I have no idea what happened here, but that might be one way the facts could fit together.
Polydipsia, along with polyuria (having to pee a lot) is also a symptom of diabetes. It's possible that the captain had a diabetic episode. Very low blood sugar can cause symptoms that look a lot like schizophrenia. So rather than a mental case, maybe this is just an illness.
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Old 4th Apr 2012, 14:46   #179 (permalink)
 
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The captain had his first hearing in federal court yesterday. He was in shackles. The government argued that he be held without bail.
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Old 4th Apr 2012, 15:39   #180 (permalink)
 
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Would not the Captain be held in a federal mental institution rather than a general fed/county prison? Totally appalling the way this poor man is being treated by the authorities, his family must be so distraught.

Daz
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