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Airbus A320 crashed in Southern France

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Airbus A320 crashed in Southern France

Old 4th Apr 2015, 13:33
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Originally Posted by Basil
Even if they have the education and ability, it would take about a year and a pile of money to get the frozen ATPL. Then they need the P2F job which won't be with a major.
Much quicker and easier to put a number of CC in position.
Quick and easy are western traits. How long has it been since 9/11? A strategy to put 'their' pilots into cockpits could be coming to fruition now with 'their' pilots possibly even captains on the smaller airlines.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 13:40
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(Not an aviation or medical professional.)
Have I missed something? I've seen no mention of this guy's earlier, pre-flying background. School? What the other kids thought? Home? Social status?
The depression diagnosis might be irrelevant/wrong - like flu and Ebola have similar symptoms. The mental state to commit mass murder (without political motive, where you are killing the enemy) seems so uncommon that the medical profession may not have enough data to predict it.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 13:46
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So what everyone seems to want is to have the medical profession determine if pilots are fit to fly both physically and mentally.
Does it bother anyone that we are asking a profession that is unable to police its self and kills more people every year by a order of magnitude then airlines through rampant drug abuse, alcohol abuse and malpractice to police another profession?
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 13:56
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Oddly enough prior to 911 FDs were much less often with only the 2 crew up front. This was down to the fact that there would be regular FD visits from interested passengers, or the jumpseat would be occupied by ATCOs or other aviation related personnel. During my ATC career I spent about 90% of my many flights (as pax) in the FD jumpseat. Sometimes (in certain types) there would even be two of us!
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 15:11
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For those of you who think recovered pilots who once suffered from depression, or those who suffer it during their careers and recover should never fly again then surely you must support making having a baby disqualifying? I mean perfectly healthy happy people have their lives turned upside down by post natal depression so should women be banned once they have been given birth? After all you never know who is suffering it and many hide it very well.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 15:24
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Self-reporting

In an effort to bring a focus onto one component of the large set of issues or problems either (a) created by the GW incident, or (b) put into much starker relief by the incident, the point at which this post is aimed at communicating is that reform of employment-related laws, procedures and regulations is not an unknown animal. Even large-scale reform.

Several statutory examples may be cited (though to make the point, these references are not included here) whereby the laws relating to employment significantly constrain the arbitrary or retaliatory action of an employer, when such employer is confronted by an employee who has taken action of which the employer strongly disapproves. The constant refrain of those posters who, while appearing to support the concept of greater self-reporting in general also withhold stronger support, is that they are convinced the airline company simply would sack (fire, terminate, furlough indefinitely) any pilot who self-reported. So, from a perspective of law reform - which by the way, is somewhat the antithesis of the "do something to reassure the public" because law reform does not happen overnight - from a perspective of wanting to instigate or prompt serious efforts to update and make more effective existing laws, legislating and implementing a solution to the "they'll get sacked, if they self-report" problem is attainable.

But attainable only in the micro sense. A good number of other posters have lamented the sad state of the airline business, and even a well-drafted, wisely implemented, and well-intentioned law reform move will not solve the rest of the problems which demand attention.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 16:55
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Sir, that is not quite correct. It is not necessarily a sign of mental illness to get destructive/negative thoughts and emotions that lead to suicidal ideation.
We had extensive (and eye watering) education on the difference between a personality disorder and mental illness, and life changing events whenever a service member would off himself (which was far too common, thanks) over the two decades that I was a serving officer.

Unless you define mental illness as "not normal, like me"
Not normal and suicidal are not the same thing.
Not normal doesn't mean mental illness, of course.
But suicide is a serious mental malfunction, thus I might ask you what do you mean by "illness", if it is different ?
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 17:00
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Suicide MIGHT be a serious mental malfunction, but I believe it is entirely possible to kill oneself as the result of an entirely logical process. For example:

old, tired, ill, going to get worse, no dependants, so lets do it with a minimum of inconvenience to third parties and pain to myself.

Entirely logical I submit.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 17:12
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Let's step back from the FD door, as a means of prevention. There are probably more posts now on this subject than there were originally from the hypoxia theorists.
ALL that counts is the suitability of the flight deck crew for the job they are required to do. Fly the aircraft from A to B.
Are they mentally fit for purpose? Are they physically fit for purpose?
Are they trained, and current, to meet any scenario that faces them on any particular flight? To the point where there is zero risk of 'pilot error', whatever?

Only then will the travelling, paying public be reassured into placing their trust, lives and faith into their hands.
It would appear that hose who control and enforce such matters are still falling short of their responsibilities.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 17:21
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Well, it's up to the lawyers, now! Very likely both Germanwings and Lufthansa will be in serious financial trouble. Lufthansa admits it knew Lubitz was unstable; Germanwings spokesperson disclaimed any prior knowlege at all!

For an airline to escape liability it must prove it was entirely free from blame.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 17:21
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. To the point where there is zero risk of 'pilot error', whatever?
There will never be zero risk, thousands fly daily and no one dreams of zero risk. There is no testing, training or pilot selection regime that would assure zero risk. Do you have zero risk when you board a bus, train or cross a street??
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 17:35
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ALL that counts is the suitability of the flight deck crew for the job they are required to do. Fly the aircraft from A to B.
Are they mentally fit for purpose?
Judging from the medical experts above, in that there is no "test" for this, the best you can hope for is "maybe"?

Are they physically fit for purpose?
Once per year they are assessed, and certified as "fit for purpose". In between times it is "self assessed". As detailed elsewhere, given the implications of calling in sick in some airlines' HR policies, it would appear quite often "not". And as also detailed elsewhere, frequently fatigued to the same extent as having imbibed in one or 2 alcoholic drinks

Are they trained, and current, to meet any scenario that faces them on any particular flight?
No - no pilot has ever been trained to meet "any scenario". Twice per year in the Sim, and once per year or 2 via Route Check they are assessed in a program set by the regulator.

To the point where there is zero risk of 'pilot error', whatever?
Never

Only then will the travelling, paying public be reassured into placing their trust, lives and faith into their hands.
Best they get a train timetable then

It would appear that hose who control and enforce such matters are still falling short of their responsibilities.
I personally think the regulators do a pretty good job, but not perfect. But you seem to have some expectation of their responsibilities that far exceeds realism
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 17:42
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Medical model

@Sailvi767 yes. Because it is based on the medical model which determines the causes of a personīs problems are located in their body. Whenever the true cause is outside, for example, in regulations or relationships between people, prescribing drugs can only eliminate the present symptoms and trigger new ones.

"A 2010-survey by the Norwegian public service broadcaster, NRK, revealed that half of the pilots have fallen asleep or dozed off while on duty, with almost 4 out of 5 pilots stating they have felt too tired to be in the cockpit."
https://www.eurocockpit.be/stories/2...-pilot-fatigue
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 18:23
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Well, it's up to the lawyers, now! Very likely both Germanwings and Lufthansa will be in serious financial trouble. Lufthansa admits it knew Lubitz was unstable; Germanwings spokesperson disclaimed any prior knowlege at all!

For an airline to escape liability it must prove it was entirely free from blame.
1. Still all up to investigations and filing the facts. For the next months.
2. Germanwings belongs entirely to LH.
3. Lufthansa flight school knew about a phase of depression during his time becoming a professional pilot. Apparently the actual flight management did not know he was still "unstable" these days.
4. And he wasn't unstable according his colleagues but rather a good pilot.
5. Germany is not the UK, not such a blame society there. Innocent until proven guilty as far as I am aware.

People who do up simplified and ignorant comments like this should better watch out the next Lubitz could be from one of their friends or family.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 18:33
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The question seems to be, how do you effectively assess a persons ability to fly a passenger aircraft reliably and safely?

People develop their character and become 'professional' through training and experience.

When they become truly professional they understand that once in the driving seat (so to speak) any personal or outside influences are a big no-no and are not a factor in the performance of their work.

Training in any industry should not simply be focused on teaching a skill but also in building character. That means a tough (not to say ruthless) training schedule designed to weed out those who don't have what it takes at an early stage.

Does the present day airline industry have such a training schedule?
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 19:09
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Another 25 testing areas

The many mentions of possible investigative intrusions into every aspect of a pilots life represent more ways a pilot may be incorrectly deemed unfit to fly. Those intrusions are all valid because we can think of cases where they have been valid. But each new one also represents another possible step up in pilot apprehension about how he is being viewed by his employers, each new one representing an additional level of distrust. One distinction that has repeatedly cropped up in posts is that suicide and murder usually do not have the same personality profiles, but there are at least some cases where they do.

The trait of empathy has come up a few times and needs to be emphasized more because empathy enables social responsibility, and lack of it weakens social responsibility. I would guess (but don't know) that the probability of lack of empathy was higher in people where suicide was combined with murder. Unlike some other traits, I think empathy or weakness can be revealed in mental assessments. Those with more knowledge I should speak up about this.

However it appears clear that there was more involved than simple murder here. This was an act of anger and retribution made in isolation against something about which we so far have virtually no information on.

It's amazing how easy it is to find exceptions to all of the suggestions for improvements. An evaluation including empathy also has flaws as possibly/probably the case of Egyptair 990, where a last minute blowup having powerful repercussions on the pilot probably precipitated an action he would not otherwise have taken. Without that bit of information about 990's pilot, the question of possible motivation was quite a mystery. With that bit the scenario of a sudden decision to throw away a lifetime's work and an imminent and comfortable retirement becomes at least somewhat plausible and less mysterious. The same kind of thing may have occurred in the GW case that made him pick this flight, or any flight at all. Just because there is intention, planning, and motivation doesn't mean final action always results. If that was true there would be a lot more instances of violence of every kind than there are. We can hope that there might be some additional suggestions of this possibility in the CVR portions not yet released, or that other figures in the GW pilot's social circle may yet come up with more information. It is a little odd that quotes by people who knew this person have been so very few. So far he doesn't seem to have had a social life outside of flying glider, which we need to recall is a group activity. However it is unfortunately also easy to come up with last minute pilot pressures that do not involve last minute relational blowups. Every new slice of preventive cheese being suggested has its own set of holes.

Last edited by Leightman 957; 7th Apr 2015 at 16:30. Reason: clarified meaning
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 19:15
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Tat quotes by people who knew this person have been so very few. So far he doesn't seem to have had a social life outside of flying glider, which we need to recall is a group activity. However it is unfortunately also easy to come up with last minute pilot pressures that do not involve last minute relational blowups. Every new slice of preventive cheese being suggested has its own set of holes.
Is it possible that some people show discretion and reserve their evidence for the official enquiry?

PS
Maxred, we only know what was leaked.

Last edited by Wader2; 4th Apr 2015 at 19:34.
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 19:26
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Is it possible that some people show discretion and reserve their evidence for the official enquiry?
Oh if only that could be the case. Discretion, reservation, tact, humility, sorry not in this case. If one reads most of the 150 pages on here, and then watch the news, and look at the newspapers, it is apparently all a done deal. This despite, very limited, actual evidence. But where did the truth count in life?
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 19:43
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FACT (through knowing someone is affected)

Not all those with mental illnesses are suicidal

Not all those who are suicidal have mental illnesses

Those that have mental illness, or not, may think about suicide but never go through with it.
Or may suddenly decide at very short notice to go through with it.

A difficult position for those that have some idea about the issues, impossible position to those that have no idea, react to media comments or think they are reacting to public views!!
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Old 4th Apr 2015, 20:07
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BEA status till April 5th

Accident to the Airbus A320-211 registered D-AIPX, flight GWI18G, on 24 March 2015

INFORMATION ON 3 APRIL 2015

The aeroplane's Flight Data Recorder (FDR) was brought to the BEA's premises yesterday evening. The BEA team started opening operations as soon as it arrived.

The initial readout shows that the pilot present in the cockpit used the autopilot to put the aeroplane into a descent towards an altitude of 100 ft then, on several occasions during the descent, the pilot modified the autopilot setting to increase the speed of the aeroplane in descent.

Work is continuing to establish the precise history of the flight.
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