Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Flight Deck Forums > Rumours & News
Reload this Page >

Airbus A320 crashed in Southern France

Rumours & News Reporting Points that may affect our jobs or lives as professional pilots. Also, items that may be of interest to professional pilots.

Airbus A320 crashed in Southern France

Old 6th May 2015, 14:56
  #3261 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: I wouldn't know.
Posts: 4,509
Received 4 Likes on 2 Posts
These were the first two flights after his period off duty during which it seems his girlfriend/fiancee had said she would leave.
Actually they weren't. The day before he did a ferry flight to berlin schönefeld and deadhead back to DUS.
Denti is online now  
Old 6th May 2015, 15:01
  #3262 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Rockytop, Tennessee, USA
Posts: 5,898
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Mode s enhanced transmits selected alt. You don't need full ADS-B.
Thanks for that clarification and the video link.

So, was the altitude knob twiddling on the earlier sector indeed a test of whether the controllers would see the altitude selection?

Like a lot of us, I've flown in that airspace for years and still don't know much about what is displayed at the ATC positions.
Airbubba is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 16:12
  #3263 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Ventura, California
Age: 65
Posts: 262
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I thought I read somewhere that the Captain never left the Flight Deck on the previous leg. I guess I was mistaken.
thcrozier is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 17:59
  #3264 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: FUBAR
Posts: 3,348
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Tend to agree with DB64 there too.

Can't imagine what must be going through the mind (well, I can actually ) of anyone who was a passenger on the Southbound sector.
captplaystation is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 19:15
  #3265 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Reading, UK
Posts: 15,984
Received 305 Likes on 158 Posts
Originally Posted by Organfreak
I'm (easily) confused. Did you mean, "northbound"?
No, the reference is to "what must be going through the mind [present tense] of anyone who was a passenger" on the DUS-BCN leg that day, now that it emerges that Lubitz may have used that flight to rehearse the procedure that subsequently led to the death of all on board the return leg.
DaveReidUK is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 20:11
  #3266 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Virginia
Posts: 9
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It will be interesting to learn if he was alone at any point on the the fd on the ferry flight. If so, the choice to intentionally cfit with passengers seems rather clear, and moves the murders from an act of opportunity to one of choice.
mommaklee is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 20:49
  #3267 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 83
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
There is a serious issue of any pilot in a two pilot crew leaving the cockpit during climb or descent. It should only occur in cruise as there is nobody to monitor the cleared inputs. This is sub standard airmanship.

On the fatal leg the Capt did not try to get back in until 5 mins after the fatal descent had began. It indicates that he considered this as normal practice. He was out of his seat on both legs when the descent began.
RifRaf3 is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 21:37
  #3268 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 83
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
If it's now perfectly normal to have only a single pilot self-monitoring during major changes of vertical flightpath, then safety has eroded considerably.
It's not difficult to organise your toilet breaks before TOD.
RifRaf3 is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 22:14
  #3269 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 3,984
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Whilst I agree ideally a comfort break should be timed to be completed prior to TOD this does not preclude many routes, certainly in Europe, where ATC might require a level change well before the "normal" TOD.
fireflybob is offline  
Old 6th May 2015, 23:43
  #3270 (permalink)  
UV
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Essex
Posts: 654
Received 3 Likes on 2 Posts
On the fatal leg the Capt did not try to get back in until 5 mins after the fatal descent had began. It indicates that he considered this as normal practice. He was out of his seat on both legs when the descent began.
Bit unfair...he had no idea what was to follow the second time.
UV is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 04:04
  #3271 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: MA
Posts: 300
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
As far as the Captain leaving the cockpit, I can certainly tell you that in the US, unless there was a significant ground hold delay after leaving the gate, it would be a small minority of flights of that length where a member of the crew would leave the cockpit. The fact that the Captain left the cockpit so soon after departure would be most unusual in the USA.
RobertS975 is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 04:27
  #3272 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Bournemouth UK
Age: 49
Posts: 879
Received 14 Likes on 7 Posts
Maybe the FO slipped something into the Captains Coffee to ensure that the Captain needed to go out.

Whilst I agree that under normal circumstances one wouldn't leave the flight deck during climb or descent if I had a stomach issue I would try and leave it at close to TOD as possible as I would't want to have a desperate need whilst on final approach.

Sometimes the bodies needs overrule the best laid plans.
Sky Wave is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 05:14
  #3273 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: I wouldn't know.
Posts: 4,509
Received 4 Likes on 2 Posts
If it's now perfectly normal to have only a single pilot self-monitoring during major changes of vertical flightpath, then safety has eroded considerably.
It's not difficult to organise your toilet breaks before TOD.
Which he did, he went to the loo right after reaching TOC. However, in europe there might be numerous level changes for many different reasons during the normal cruise portion of the flight. Some even having to do with how the company filed the flight plan. Had a flight on that routing lately and there were five planned cruise climbs/descends on the ATC flight plan.

As far as the Captain leaving the cockpit, I can certainly tell you that in the US, unless there was a significant ground hold delay after leaving the gate, it would be a small minority of flights of that length where a member of the crew would leave the cockpit. The fact that the Captain left the cockpit so soon after departure would be most unusual in the USA.
Which might have to do with the hassle of the two person rule, which still isn't mandatory in europe, although most airlines did implement it by now. I have since seen colleagues severely dehydrating as they want to reduce their loo breaks during flight. Something that is not really conductive to top physical and mental performance either.
Denti is online now  
Old 7th May 2015, 08:52
  #3274 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Dublin
Posts: 987
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Is it not possible that rather than practising he was going to crash the aircraft but could not go through with it?
Fortunate the Dusseldorf to Barcelona track of that day was to the right of the four nuclear power stations along the Rhone valley. Indeed, from the crash site to Cruas nuclear power station it is only 79 nautical miles.

Last edited by Sober Lark; 7th May 2015 at 09:35.
Sober Lark is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 10:31
  #3275 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Florida and wherever my laptop is
Posts: 1,350
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by RobertS975
As far as the Captain leaving the cockpit, I can certainly tell you that in the US, unless there was a significant ground hold delay after leaving the gate, it would be a small minority of flights of that length where a member of the crew would leave the cockpit. The fact that the Captain left the cockpit so soon after departure would be most unusual in the USA.
It may be pure coincidence and I only fly four times a week on short 1 - 1.5 hour flights, but I have noticed that the crews seem to be taking toilet breaks as the pax self load. I had not noticed this before.
Ian W is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 11:53
  #3276 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Adelaide
Posts: 108
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Ian W: I concur.

I'm only a (reasonably-frequent) SLF but, on a recent Oz-NZ-Oz trip, I noticed that both flight deck crew members visited the forward lav while pax were boarding.

Not something I'd observed previously...

Perhaps this procedure is a new before-take-off check item?
deanm is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 12:22
  #3277 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Gone sailing
Age: 58
Posts: 115
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
@Rifraf3 and RobertS975,

keep in mind that central Europe is a very congested airspace, chances are that you have to descend from cruising altitude long before your desired TOD. Regarding this it makes sense to leave the flight deck as early as possible to do whatever you have to do back in the cabin.
20milesout is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 14:21
  #3278 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Bournemouth UK
Age: 49
Posts: 879
Received 14 Likes on 7 Posts
@ Ian W and deanm

I think the majority of us have always used the turn around as an opportunity to use the loo. The exception is if there are technical issues on the turn around and you run out of time. In that case rather than delay the flight I'd wait until the cruise regardless of the length of the flight.

I suspect you just happen to notice it happening because you're more alert to it.
Sky Wave is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 17:30
  #3279 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Birmingham
Posts: 109
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Is it also possible that this captain had a habit of leaving the cockpit?

Prelim also says that Captain reported problem with front toilet not flushing and he was advised from base to reset a breaker at the rear of the plane. Maybe attending to this issue was the reason for him to leave the cockpit.
sAx_R54 is offline  
Old 7th May 2015, 17:45
  #3280 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Somewhere close to me
Posts: 742
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I am wondering how many of you have actually bothered to read the preliminary report. So many are claiming that the Captain left the cockpit during the climb!

The report clearly states the Captain left the cockpit after reaching cruising level FL 380!

Page 28 of the report, in Initial Findings.
The Captain left the cockpit at the beginning of the cruise at FL380! (just shows how many arm-chair experts there are here, when you don't even bother to READ the FACTS!

So after TOC! And before TOD!
How hard is it to read and understand this?

This is perfectly normal, special due to LCC ops often only allow 25 minutes on the ground for the turn-around, and we can't always plan the exact moment we need to make our comfort break!
truckflyer is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.