French Plane Crash Part 4: Co-pilot wanted to crash

BY CHARL BOSCH - MARCH 26, 2015

A French prosecutor has said that the co-pilot of the downed Germanwings Airbus wanted to crash after refusing the pilot entry to the cockpit

Speaking at a press conference, Brice Robin said that information recovered from the black box voice recorder of Flight 4U9525, showed that 28-year old Andreas Lubitz locked himself in the cabin after the regular pilot had briefly left to possibly visit the bathroom. He then refused to open the door before upping the plane’s speed. None of the 144 passengers or six crew members on-board survived.

“We hear the pilot ask the co-pilot to take control of the plane and we hear at the same time the sound of a seat moving backwards and the sound of a door closing. We assume he went to the loo or something. At that moment, the co-pilot is controlling the plane by himself. While he is alone, the co-pilot presses the buttons of the flight monitoring system to put into action the descent of the aeroplane”.

Data tracking information showed that the A320 fell from 38 000 feet to 6 800 feat in less than eight minutes which, according to Robin, then triggered its low-altitude warning buzzer.

“We hear several cries from the captain asking to get in. Through the intercom system he identifies himself - but there is no answer. He knocks on the door and asks for it to be opened - but there is no answer,” Robin said, adding that only breathing could be heard in the cabin moments before the plane impacting a mountain near the town of Barcelonnette.

He also said that Lubitz did not radio the control tower signalling there might be problem, and that he also failed to respond to air-traffic controllers’ distress calls.

Robin said that the passengers probably realised the impending disaster seconds before the plane, which had been heading to Dusseldorf from Barcelona, smashed into the cliff-face as screams could be heard on the recorder.

Investigators have ruled terrorism out as a possible motive with no knowledge of Lubitz’s ethnicity or religion being known. German media reports that the joined Germanwings, the low-cost division of national carrier Lufthansa, directly from the carriers training camp in 2013, and that he had clocked-up over 630 hours flying time.

 

CAPTION: Germanwings Airbus A320 IMAGE sourced from plainspotters.net

 

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