View Full Version : Gerwings relatives to sue Flight Trainer US

24th Mar 2016, 21:06
Wonder how far they will get with that.

Of course the layman would ask why the medical history of pilot is not available to the relavant authority.
Or at least a signature from a GP stating that a person is fit to obtain an aviation medical certificate.

If someone presents me with a valid aviation medical, i am quite happy to train them and let them fly solo or be an Airline Pilot.

I have had a few students that have later admitted to having depression and treatment. (usually ex Policemen and Teachers?).

What do i have to do now running a flying school.
Get every member to sign a form declaring they are sane or have no condition that prevents them from flying.

What if they win their case.
Will all flying schools close down?
Where and when does the buck stop.
What happens if someone i taught 20 years ago flips.
If no school go after the instructor.

If the regulator requires medicals, then that's where the claimants should go.
They decided the rules we play by.

What next, car passenger victim relatives suing the drivers Driving School?

25th Mar 2016, 08:04
Perhaps the school were negligent in not flagging him up, but I see this as a medical failing. Allowing him to hold a class 1 was the issue wasn't it? It's been revealed that the anti depressants he was on lead to suicidal tendencies.

25th Mar 2016, 10:21
Hard to judge by the few information bits we receive in the newspaper. Did the pilot fly on a FAA license with an US class 1 medical, so in question is wether the US system was applied correctly at the US school? I see nothing wrong with an US judge doing an independent review check on the procedures. The EU system would deal differently and much more hidden with such investigations, both ways have advantages and disadvantages.

30th Mar 2016, 10:36
Curious that they plan to seek damages through the Arizona based division of Lufthansa Flight Training - Airline Training Center Arizona (ATCA) as his training would have been overseen by the parent company in Bremen at that time. The reported decision to interrupt training would have been made in consultation with the Head of Training in Germany and although he held an FAA Airman's Medical Certificate, his JAA Class 1 should also have been influenced. Perhaps the FAA's transparent and more readily available records make the likelihood of a successful case in the US greater? And of course there is the obvious: The families’ lawyers argue that compensation in air accident cases in the United States is usually a lot higher than in Germany.
There are many professional pilots flying today who have had their training suspended at some point due to either medical or performance concerns who have subsequently been allowed to resume flying in the interest of running the business - I would be surprised if Lufthansa Flight Training had their own interests in mind in this unfortunate case however.

30th Mar 2016, 16:36
Of course the layman would ask why the medical history of pilot is not available to the relavant authority.That is down to the German Government, and that is who they should sue!

31st Mar 2016, 15:05
Are we talking DUTY OF CARE?

The inference is that the Training Provider should have seen the medical issues and terminated his training.
But they of course do not issue the medicals. He went home unwell for a while, returned improved, medical reinstated and completed his initial training.

I cannot really see how an ATO is at fault, unless of course they withheld relevant information as to his condition from the authorities/regulators?

That question will be answered in the fullness of time, and ATOs will be taking great interest in the outcome. :uhoh:

31st Mar 2016, 16:31
This is more than just a case of a diagnosis resulting in denial or suspension or a medical certificate though. Have you ever flown with someone whose behaviour has lead you to suspect they may be masking something? Have you encountered a situation where a trainee has been allowed to continue flying despite concerns from instructors that they might be better suited to an alternative career? Are training records 'adjusted' to better reflect the candidates ambition than their ability? Are professional pilot students referred for psychological evaluation following a training episode quietly returned to active (and solo) flying after a diagnosis by the school specialist of 'no fault found'?
I cannot really see how an ATO is at fault, unless of course they withheld relevant information as to his condition from the authorities/regulators?
I don't think this is likely in this case however does it happen elsewhere? Much is made of the responsibility of the certificate holder to report any decrease in medical fitness, but during initial training the ATO must surely have a duty of care?

31st Mar 2016, 21:33
Regarding the assessment of training records and ATO decision making, this report may be instructive:


1st Apr 2016, 11:21
It is always easy to be wise after the event. The Germanwings issue was mainly a medical issue, as oppose to purely flying ability which the KOS event was about.

The training records of the then FTO for the CPL/IR on the modular route indicate two attempts for the CPL, and three attempts for the IRT.
Although less than sparkling, there was no AAIB information about his landings during training for the PPL or CPL/IR issue. I think that this would in fact have been quite revealing; I would speculate that landings from the outset were an issue ???

The landing weaknesses became evident post CPL/IR issue. This started in the simulator prior to the type rating course. There were a number of adverse comments. However any student needs to have it demonstrated in the first instance. Simply "having a go" allowing trial & error to occur is unsatisfactory, and poor instructional technique. It can do more harm and good.

Whilst there were a number of lessons learnt, it can be more difficult when dealing with an existing employee of the company.

Since then BA had a similar event in Glasgow last July.

1st Apr 2016, 16:22
The Flight Ops Director of a major UK airline recently stated that they had made mistakes with respect to cadets in recent years and only appreciated this when they discovered that they really needed to teach them how to fly as well as training them how to land - this for both MPL and conventional students. The erosion of the basic flying syllabus in large training schools and the transplanting of all basic training overseas has exacerbated the problem. What does this say about our once proud flight training industry?
Would you be surprised to learn that students training for a JAA/EASA CPL in the US for example, had suffered landing incidents where the undercarriage was detached from the aircraft and whilst another student taxied into a windsock pole yet their training records made no mention of either of these, in large part because the training, although conforming to an approved JAA or EASA syllabus, was conducted outside of the jurisdiction of the authority and could be kept quiet to protect the interests of the students.
Simply "having a go" allowing trial & error to occur is unsatisfactory, and poor instructional technique. It can do more harm and good.
Which sadly is how many cadet's have 'learnt' during ab-initio training.

These were of course technical issues however similarities with respect to transparent record keeping in other areas are entirely possible.

1st Apr 2016, 17:06
Just following on from reverserbucket, once the source of A2s virtually dried up, the basic training world was relying upon those taught by ex A2s, but in the main, on a wing & a prayer.
You need a robust Standards Department to ensure that the QUALITY is present. Fundamentally the student must be taught how to trim, and trim well.

Easier said than done.

1st Apr 2016, 20:36
A few of us have had the misfortune of flying with ex US 'trained' cadets and erm what can I say...........Agreed, pre JAA we were the best in the world I've no doubt about that, sadly not any more.

Piltdown Man
2nd Apr 2016, 18:38
The people who need to be sued are EASA. It was their system that made the rules, their system performed the oversight and their system that let them down. What happened could have been anticipated because this sort of thing has already happened. Over the years I have flown with various people who have not been mentally fit for flight. Some because of their immature and childish way of dealing with things that don't give as they anticipated and others because of their mental state (medically that is). The difference between the two is that those who were medically I'll have all returned better people. More importantly, they were fixed, so to speak.

So if EASA are taken to court and if (or more likely, when) they lose, the money should come out of their pension fund. They don't deserve the air they breathe.


2nd Apr 2016, 19:39
Diverging from the topic ~ if the LEAVE.EU succeed on 23 June, will the UK leave EASA, and return to home rule.
One thing is for certain, the standards will improve.
A modified CAP509 reintroduced. 😎😎😎😎😎

2nd Apr 2016, 21:17
Highly unlikely me thinks Parkfell. To much invested in EASA.

4th Apr 2016, 07:14
will the UK leave EASA, and return to home rule.
No Money
No Incentive
No Knowledge
but they will be able to gold plate to their heart's content!