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Klaus
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:33 am

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 36):
Germans are more organized than humans.
Quoting jetterrosie (Reply 43):
The airline will feel pressured by media and their own people to say something. It takes a very strong CEO/President to resist that public pressure to make a comment when they are being bombarded with the same info we are.

Both the CEOs of Germanwings and of Lufthansa have so far correctly focused almost exclusively on support for the families of the victims, and they wouldn't know anything more than BEA anyway.

Quoting 764 (Reply 44):
And the glide path seems consistent with uncontrolled flight, doesn't it? .

No, as far as I recall, among the few things the BEA representative did say was that the path appeared to be consistent with controlled flight as far as known.

From what I've seen it seemed to be ruler-straight in heading and sink rate, with only airspeed fluctuating slightly.
 
hivue
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:34 am

If a pilot wants to kill himself by crashing his airplane and he can keep the other guy locked out for 5 minutes before he has to do a reset on the lockout, why does he do an 8 minute 3000 fpm descent? Why provide a chance for someone to break in the door or he misses doing the reset? This whole pilot suicide thing just doesn't ring true to me.

[Edited 2015-03-25 20:36:19]

[Edited 2015-03-25 20:37:13]
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solarflyer22
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:35 am

Quoting Klaus (Reply 37):

I wouldn't ascribe it to that alone, really, but at least as far as I've heard the Germanwings aircraft are supposed to be maintained to the same standards as the main line ones (by Lufthansa Technik).

That's correct. They've actually said that. BA had a low cost brand too.

Quoting 764 (Reply 44):
But I am very afraid that in this case the "terrorism proofing" may have actually cost 150+ lives. And the glide path seems consistent with uncontrolled flight, doesn't it? .

Me too. I don't think this is a suicidal co pilot. Why not just slam the plane straight smack into the ground? It looked like an odd auto pilot medium fast decent. I'm guessing something happened to one pilot and the other panicked trying to get back in.
 
flymia
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:36 am

Quoting 764 (Reply 44):
And the glide path seems consistent with uncontrolled flight, doesn't it? .

Course remained unchanged. Would not call this "uncontrolled flight" just a steep decent but also not a uncontrolled decent.


Quoting 764 (Reply 44):
So the remaining crew member would be by him or herself. If something were to happen to them (stroke, heart attack, whatever),

The lockout system should had let the pilot trying to get into the cockpit in at some point.

Not having two people in the cockpit during flight is plainly irresponsible and horrible safety procedure drafting. Whether or not this was the cause of the crash this rule should be changed in all airlines, world wide.
"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
 
davs5032
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:41 am

Quoting 764 (Reply 44):

Somehow I am very sad to see that once again a lot of fellow a.netters are happy to jump to the conclusion that foul play must be the cause. As far as I know, Germanwings does not require an F/A to enter the flight deck when one of the flight crew goes to the bathroom. So the remaining crew member would be by him or herself. If something were to happen to them (stroke, heart attack, whatever), there would be nobody in there. No why the door was locked remains to be answered. But I am very afraid that in this case the "terrorism proofing" may have actually cost 150+ lives. And the glide path seems consistent with uncontrolled flight, doesn't it? .

No one's happy about the conclusion or jumping to it. There's also been a visible effort by almost everyone in here to comment in an opinion-based fashion and limiting assumptions and bias. We want to know the answers because it's human nature to search for answers when things go wrong or disasters happen, and as pieces come into place, the puzzle is bound to become clearer at some point. If it points squarely at foul play, why are we the bad guy for pointing out the logical/rational conclusion based on the set of facts emerging?

If a sole crew member was in the cockpit and suffered stroke/heart attack (and therefore could not actually flip the switch to lock out all attempts to open) the lock mechanism clearly provides a way for entry, as has been detailed above.

Can you come up with another answer for the door being actively locked by the pilot than the suicide theory? I cannot...

This glide path does not seem consistent with uncontrolled flight at all, as the glide path that was assumed required a physical act to be performed by the pilot, or else the level flight at FL380 continues, no?
 
AirCalSNA
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:42 am

Quoting jetterrosie (Reply 43):
And there lies the problem Klaus. The airline will feel pressured by media and their own people to say something. It takes a very strong CEO/President to resist that public pressure to make a comment when they are being bombarded with the same info we are. And he/she is damned if they do and damned if they don't. Look at the criticism being aimed at MH post their accidents. Leaving aside how well they handled it, they had an unprecedented situation to deal with, they didn't know how to handle it and understandably messed up sometimes. Thus why the NTSB regulations of not saying anything to anyone before they approve it makes sense. They are kind of like the impartial guardians of a crash...they know the company and staff are emotionally invested plus have future customers/stakeholders/revenue to deal with, so if an independent body who doesn't have that very personal emotional connection takes over the company should be able to get on with their own business. Which would work just fine if it wasn't for the conspiracy theory crew and the media desperate for an instant answer.

The solution is not resisting the pressure to "say something," but rather having the brains and instincts to figure when and how to say the "right thing," as well as what the "right thing" is at any given moment. The attitude that the public has no right to know and can be just brushed off is quite obviously obsolete in the digital age. The NTSB briefings on the Asiana/SFO incident might be a good example of how to stay ahead of the news cycle.
 
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litz
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:46 am

Is it possible that something almost unbelievable happened here, and both crew somehow ended up locked out?
 
UALWN
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:46 am

Quoting alberchico (Reply 10):
Wouldn't it make more sense if it was one of the flight attendants trying to get into the cockpit with both pilots having blacked out ?

The BEA and the person who has leaked the story to the NYT have listened to the CVR. I'd venture to say that they have heard one of the pilots saying "I'm gonna take a leak" or something like that. Then silence, then the knocking on the door, then the banging, etc.
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wjcandee
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:46 am

Assuming that the report in the NYT is accurate...

Everyone is forgetting that there was an ATC communication less than a minute before the beginning of the descent. It would seem to be an extreme coincidence that the pilot in the cockpit, if in distress, would offer such a normal communication back to ATC. Presumably the descent doesn't occur with both guys in the cockpit, and communicating with ATC at TOC would seem to be a normal precursor to exiting the cockpit to do whatever. So, an EWAG is that they reached TOC, communicated with ATC, and then the guy got up and exited the cockpit. Shortly thereafter, the remaining pilot started the descent. Maybe not immediately, but likely some reasonably-short time thereafter, the other pilot would want back in.

If I understand the lockout procedure, he would knock, then pound, then enter his code, whereupon the other pilot could/would/did lock him out for 5-8 minutes with a specific flip of a switch.

We obviously don't know if this was the sequence, but it's a logical one, and it suggests, although clearly does not prove, intentional activity. If I were writing a search warrant application based upon these facts, or a probable cause to arrest affidavit, I would get my search warrant and my probable cause would be sustained. (Of course, more proof would be necessary down the line, but there's enough smoke here to raise the question without being premature.)
 
Klaus
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:52 am

Quoting UALWN (Reply 57):
The BEA and the person who has leaked the story to the NYT have listened to the CVR.

Correction: The NYT reports having someone telling them about the CVR recording. This may or may not actually pan out to be true.

The only thing we actually know is that the BEA team has read a recording off the device and have listened to it (assuming the official BEA speaker didn't just make everything up himself, which is a reasonable bet).

I'd wait for the next authorized BEA statement before drawing actual conclusions.
 
RickNRoll
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:52 am

Quoting litz (Reply 56):
Is it possible that something almost unbelievable happened here, and both crew somehow ended up locked out?

Not much point knocking softly on the door then.
 
hivue
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:53 am

So when a pilot leaves the flight deck the door locks behind him from the inside only. However, the cabin crew have a secret code to get into the flight deck if necessary. However... the pilot remaining on the flight deck has a magic switch that keeps the secret code from working for 5 minutes. Or longer than 5 minutes if it's set differently. Sounds like a cockpit door designer who should actually be doing games for Nintendo.
"You're sitting. In a chair. In the SKY!!" ~ Louis C.K.
 
jetterrosie
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:55 am

Quoting AirCalSNA (Reply 55):

I'm not disagreeing with you AirCalSNA, but in our case the CEO was personal friends with someone who died. I have no idea how this company's management was connected to the actual crew, but in our case most of us were. So we were left with dealing with either grieving ourselves or dealing with grieving colleagues and/or family or most likely all of the above. I imagine Germanwings is in a similar place. I think it might be a bit much to expect leadership to deal with that properly in the first week or two, letalone the first 48 hours. I'm not excusing leadership from not saying anything or from saying the wrong thing, I'm just trying to explain why their response in the first week might not be what you'd expect. We are all human...even CEOs!!!
 
32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 3:58 am

Quoting hivue (Reply 61):
So when a pilot leaves the flight deck the door locks behind him from the inside only. However, the cabin crew have a secret code to get into the flight deck if necessary. However... the pilot remaining on the flight deck has a magic switch that keeps the secret code from working for 5 minutes. Or longer than 5 minutes if it's set differently. Sounds like a cockpit door designer who should actually be doing games for Nintendo.

The whole point is that they crew can lock out someone who may have a gun to the FA for example.

[Edited 2015-03-25 21:07:06]
 
uatulip
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:08 am

Quoting alberchico (Reply 10):

The video suggests that all communication between people outside the flight deck and those inside the flight deck occurs on the interphone. I could be completely off, but why would the pilot that left the cockpit knock on the cockpit door instead of following SOP and phoning the flight deck to request a "routine" entry?

UATulip
 
surfdog75
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:09 am

In the US there are at least 2 people in the cockpit at all times. FA if one of the pilots uses the lav. Not sure why that wouldn't be universal world wide in this day and age.
 
heyjoojoo
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:10 am

So are we still dismissing that terrorism is a possibility here?
 
spacecadet
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:10 am

Quoting vnangia (Reply 38):
Given the descent was 8+ minutes, unless the lockout time period has changed, would suggest that it's unlikely to have been accidental.

Two other possibilities:

1) The locked-out pilot was actually only locked out for 5 minutes, but didn't realize it. Think about it. If you're locked out and your key code is not working, how many times are you going to try it before just bashing the door in? You're not going to sit there watching the clock. You're going to try the code 5-6 times, bang on the door 5-6 times, try your key code maybe once or twice more, then you're going to head to the galley to grab a cart and some guys to push it with you into the door. Or you're going to go looking for something to cut into the door with (I'm not sure if there's an axe or something accessible to the crew from the cabin).

The point is you're not going to sit there patiently waiting for 5 minutes to elapse. And the end result may very well be that you overshoot, and are still in the process of trying to break the door down in minutes 5-8.

2) The lock broke and the pilot in the cockpit had a health event of some kind. I don't know the internal design of these specific locks but every other type of lock that I know of can be broken one way or another.

Quoting solarflyer22 (Reply 52):
Why not just slam the plane straight smack into the ground?

Unless you didn't want investigators to be able to come to any definitive conclusion.

Lock the door, put your plane in a firm but not unprecedented auto-pilot controlled descent and then say absolutely nothing. Who can prove that it wasn't some form of incapacitation? It would make for a much different legal landscape for those the suicidal pilot is leaving behind, not to mention how he's remembered by his loved ones.

I'm just playing devil's advocate on both sides. It is still possible that it's either an accident or suicide, although to me suicide seems more likely.

[Edited 2015-03-25 21:13:36]
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32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:12 am

Quoting spacecadet (Reply 67):
Two other possibilities:

1) The locked-out pilot was actually only locked out for 5 minutes, but didn't realize it. Think about it. If you're locked out and your key code is not working, how many times are you going to try it before just bashing the door in? You're not going to sit there watching the clock. You're going to try the code 5-6 times, bang on the door 5-6 times, try your key code maybe once or twice more, then you're going to head to the galley to grab a cart and some guys to push it with you into the door. Or you're going to go looking for something to cut into the door with (I'm not sure if there's an axe or something accessible to the crew from the cabin).

The point is you're not going to sit there patiently waiting for 5 minutes to elapse. And the end result may very well be that you overshoot, and are still in the process of trying to break the door down in minutes 5-8.

Or the descent starts while pilot is in the restroom. Restroom takes 2-3 mins and then you are 5 mins from impact. Or whatever other reasonable timeline Decent 1 min after leaving and in restroom for 3 mins.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:13 am

Quoting 32andBelow (Reply 63):
The whole point is that they crew can lock out someone who may have a gun to the FA for example.

Yeah. You have a real problem. If you don't have a lock-out, you could wind up in a situation where an armed gunman or knifeman can enter the cockpit. But if you do have a lock-out, you have a situation in which a madman can take control of the flight deck. And that's happened before and I suspect it happened here.
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litz
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:15 am

Back back up to reply 45, and check the flight manual linked there ...

It describes exactly how the door lock/security system works on pages 18 and 20-32.

If the person in the cockpit sets the door lock control knob to "Lock", there is a preset period of time (5 to 20 minutes, configurable by the airline) from that point forward, that the door is unlockable.

It disables the numeric code, the emergency numeric code, everything.

The way it works in "normal mode" is this :

There's a "we'd like to come in" code, presumably issued to the cabin crew, that chimes in the cockpit. The crew then sets the knob to "Open", and the locks are disengaged for a single entry (it locks upon reclosing).

Then there's an "emergency access" code, one would theorize would be known by the cockpit crew and the cabin lead ... this causes a buzzer/alarm in the cockpit, and if no action is taken by the cockpit crew to respond (e.g., set the knob to OPEN or LOCK), within a few seconds, the door unlocks.

Now mind you, I don't work for an airline, fly an airplane, or do anything in any way involved with airplanes other than sit in my assigned seat in the money making part of the operation ...

but based on that document, unless the system malfunctions, the only way I see that one could get locked out of the cockpit is either a mistaken setting of that knob to "LOCK", or an intentional setting of the same.

And if that timeout period was set by the airline to a period longer than the 8 minutes they had ... well, they're not getting in ...

(edit) - spacecadet - check the document I linked ... it shows the lock design.

It's three separate latches (I'd guess some kind of electromagnetically controlled deadbolt), not a simple latch

[Edited 2015-03-25 21:18:24]
 
uatulip
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:15 am

Interesting that the standard lockout is 5 min (I realize that can be adjusted), going to the bathroom takes 1/2 or 2/3 min tops, and the duration of the pilot's exit to impact was 8 min... If accurate, the numbers fit well. Pre-meditated?
 
32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:16 am

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 69):
Yeah. You have a real problem. If you don't have a lock-out, you could wind up in a situation where an armed gunman or knifeman can enter the cockpit. But if you do have a lock-out, you have a situation in which a madman can take control of the flight deck. And that's happened before and I suspect it happened here.

With todays passengers a soft lock almost seems more effective. Take a couple hits for an intruder(will get tackled by passengers), A couple hard hits from the back and you can get in with help of the passengers.
 
penguins
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:17 am

In the movie United 93, the passengers destroyed the door with a trolley. Is this possible. If so, maybe the PIC depressurized the plane. Either way, the horror of the passengers must have been unbearable. I assume a terrorist group would have claimed responsibility by now if they were related.
 
sharles
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:17 am

Quoting bond007 (Reply 48):
The glide path actually seems very consistent with controlled flight ...depending on how you look at it.

The glide path, IMHO, is also consistent with a cardiac event causing the pilot to flail and hit the yoke.
Besides, if I was locked out of the cockpit for more than 4-5 minutes with no clear signs that I will be getting back in, I'd just use the extra emergency access (depressurize the plane quickly).
 
32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:18 am

Quoting penguins (Reply 73):

In the movie United 93, the passengers destroyed the door with a trolley. Is this possible. If so, maybe the PIC depressurized the plane. Either way, the horror of the passengers must have been unbearable. I assume a terrorist group would have claimed responsibility by now if they were related.

The cockpit doors were hardened after the events of 9/11.
 
MD88CLE
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:18 am

Quoting Klaus (Reply 50):
From what I've seen it seemed to be ruler-straight in heading and sink rate, with only airspeed fluctuating slightly.

Just curious, are you sure it's even airspeed? AFAIK the FR24 data (and any other data you can find based on ADS-B) shows ground speed, not airspeed.
 
32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:19 am

Quoting sharles (Reply 74):
The glide path, IMHO, is also consistent with a cardiac event causing the pilot to flail and hit the yoke.
Besides, if I was locked out of the cockpit for more than 4-5 minutes with no clear signs that I will be getting back in, I'd just use the extra emergency access (depressurize the plane quickly).

Considering it was an Airbus I think this is less likely.
 
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litz
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:19 am

Quoting penguins (Reply 73):
In the movie United 93, the passengers destroyed the door with a trolley. Is this possible. If so, maybe the PIC depressurized the plane. Either way, the horror of the passengers must have been unbearable. I assume a terrorist group would have claimed responsibility by now if they were related.

United 93 was, obviously, a pre 9/11 design ... one would presume considerably less secure.
 
airtechy
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:20 am

In the US, trained pilots are allowed to carry guns in the cockpit. One of them accidentally fired a round through the side of the cockpit. Think about the implications of that.
 
Ellehammer
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:21 am

Speculation: if one pilot goes to the toilet, and the other one wants to crash the plane, wouldn't the best tactic be to go into a gradual descent like the one seen, to arouse the least suspicion for the longest time?
- The pilot in the toilet would not notice the smooth pitch-down maneuver at the beginning of the dive and - with no windows - most probably wouldn't notice the slight nose down angle while he was in the toilet. No passengers would be alarmed either. Coming out of the toilet, maybe noticing the attitude of the plane, and then encountering a locked door, he would certainly notice something amiss, but by then most of the descent would have been completed.
 
32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:23 am

Quoting litz (Reply 78):
United 93 was, obviously, a pre 9/11 design ... one would presume considerably less secure.

All doors pre 911 were not bullet proof, they are now all bullet proof. There is no assumption of this.
 
uatulip
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:25 am

Quoting Ellehammer (Reply 80):
gradual descent like the one seen

gradual descent = longer descent. So no, most of the descent would not have been completed by the time the pilot exits the lav. Especially from FL380.
 
AS512
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:25 am

It seems weird to me that to put the plane into the configuration to descend at that speed, both engines would be brought back to idle and speed brakes would be used. I've flown enough to notice a large difference in the sound that the engines are spooling down and i'd assume that a pilot would also notice that sound difference.
 
sharles
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:26 am

Quoting 32andBelow (Reply 77):
Considering it was an Airbus I think this is less likely.

Why?
Airbus maintains flight path with stick neutral, if I understand correctly.
 
32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:32 am

Quoting sharles (Reply 84):
Why?
Airbus maintains flight path with stick neutral, if I understand correctly.

In cruise why would you have your hand on the stick? There really isn't a yoke to slump forward on to. I think it is possible, but unlikely. A 737 for example has the large column right in front of the pilot that you could fall forward on to.
 
spacecadet
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:32 am

Quoting litz (Reply 70):
It's three separate latches (I'd guess some kind of electromagnetically controlled deadbolt), not a simple latch

It still has to be controlled by a central computer. There's also a "mechanical override" that seems to be a potential failure point. I'd be curious to know what failsafes are built into the system to ensure that the lock can never get into a situation where it cannot be unlocked. It wouldn't surprise me if there are no such failsafes, given that there is a quick release panel for emergency egress from the cockpit. I don't think these doors and locks are built with suicidal pilots in mind, and the key code "failsafe" for incapacitation may not be enough, since it doesn't take into account a door malfunction.

Wasn't there a B6 flight a while ago where one pilot got locked out and the other had to land the plane by himself?

Edit: Nope, it was Delta, and it was an MD90 - but I'm curious if the doors are similar: http://ktla.com/2015/01/30/delta-pil...ked-out-of-cockpit-during-landing/

Quoting Ellehammer (Reply 80):
The pilot in the toilet would not notice the smooth pitch-down maneuver at the beginning of the dive

I think a pilot would notice. I notice no matter how gentle the pitchdown is. It's like going over the first hill on a roller coaster. I both feel the slight negative G-force and I also feel it in my inner ear, which tells me our attitude has changed. I would think a pilot who does this several times per day would be even more in tune to it.

I'm definitely not disputing that a suicidal pilot *would* do this kind of descent, I just don't believe another pilot wouldn't realize it. He might not think it was anything serious, though; maybe just that he'd heard from ATC that they were anticipating a rough ride or something and were going lower as a result.

[Edited 2015-03-25 21:41:15]
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32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:35 am

Quoting spacecadet (Reply 86):
I think a pilot would notice. I notice no matter how gentle the pitchdown is. It's like going over the first hill on a roller coaster. I both feel the slight negative G-force and I also feel it in my inner ear, which tells me our attitude has changed. I would think a pilot who does this several times per day would be even more in tune to it.

So next question. In the 1 pilot scenario, if ATC were to request an altitude change for traffic, would the single pilot change altitude or ask to wait for additional crew to return. What I am getting at is a normal decent may not be a "red flag" to the other pilot.
 
Ellehammer
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:41 am

Good points, spacecadet. Yeah, he might have noticed a pitch down and just thought it would have been ATC commanding a slightly lower altitude.

Also a good point by AS512 regarding the spooled-down engines. Would it be possible to make a descent like that without spooling the engines down and without overspeeding?

There is also the whole psychological aspect. If the pilot going to the toilet really didn't expect any problems he could perhaps have ignored any small, otherwise troubling signs.

All this is moot if a descent as the one actually performed would be immediately evident to anyone on the plane, due to the force of the maneuver. More knowledgeable people can surely say something about that.

[Edited 2015-03-25 21:43:30]
 
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notaxonrotax
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:47 am

Quoting sharles (Reply 84):

Airbus has no yoke.....that was 32andbelow's observation.

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Clipper101
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:54 am

Quoting airtechy (Reply 2):
I said several years ago that the locked cockpit door seemed to have stopped terrorist passenger entry. Maybe they have figured out that it's a lot easier to start from within the cockpit. It would be interesting to know what religion the pilot/pilots followed. That seems to have been a factor in past pilot suicides.

Thoughts?

First thoughts that come to mind is that your suggestion is very stereotypic
 
LTC8K6
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:02 am

Quoting 32andBelow (Reply 85):
In cruise why would you have your hand on the stick? There really isn't a yoke to slump forward on to. I think it is possible, but unlikely. A 737 for example has the large column right in front of the pilot that you could fall forward on to.

I think you'd have to be unbelted to fall forward to the yoke.

And if you are incapacitated, you can't keep the other pilot out of the cockpit, apparently.

Have to be a door lock failure, or the guy in the cockpit rigged up something to keep the door locked?

Are we talking about locking the pilot out, setting the descent, rigging the door, and then committing suicide?
 
737tdi
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:07 am

Quoting spacecadet (Reply 67):
1) The locked-out pilot was actually only locked out for 5 minutes, but didn't realize it. Think about it. If you're locked out and your key code is not working, how many times are you going to try it before just bashing the door in? You're not going to sit there watching the clock. You're going to try the code 5-6 times, bang on the door 5-6 times, try your key code maybe once or twice more, then you're going to head to the galley to grab a cart and some guys to push it with you into the door. Or you're going to go looking for something to cut into the door with (I'm not sure if there's an axe or something accessible to the crew from the cabin).

Just a FYI, I installed a lot of these doors on Boeings after 9/11 and I can tell you that you are not going to break into that door and no there is nothing in the cabin or cockpit that could penetrate that door. I won't go into details, you will just have to trust me.
 
oflanigan
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:08 am

With all the envelope protection embedded in modern aircraft, why do we still have controlled flight into terrain, or incapacitated flight? Minus running out of fuel, there must be a way that modern aircraft include systems that don't permit a continues 3000 ft per min decent into a mountain.
 
spacecadet
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:08 am

Quoting LTC8K6 (Reply 91):
Are we talking about locking the pilot out, setting the descent, rigging the door, and then committing suicide?

That seems to be the prevalent theory based on the NY Times article. And I think the most likely one too, assuming that report is accurate.

I've been trying to play devil's advocate a bit by noting that there was at least one case on an MD-90 of a pilot being locked out of the cockpit due to a door malfunction. If something similar happened coincidentally while a pilot was incapacitated, you could still have an accident like this.

Either way, if this report is accurate, that door/lock design is probably going to need some attention.
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32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:09 am

Quoting LTC8K6 (Reply 91):
Are we talking about locking the pilot out, setting the descent, rigging the door, and then committing suicide?

Yes that sums it up.

Quoting LTC8K6 (Reply 91):
I think you'd have to be unbelted to fall forward to the yoke.

I don't think this would be out of the realm of possibilities for a flight (I'm not talking about what the book says, I'm talking about real life) However, I do not believe this is what happened here.

[Edited 2015-03-25 22:09:53]
 
wjcandee
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:10 am

Quoting spacecadet (Reply 94):
that door/lock design is probably going to need some attention.

I disagree. The policies for its use need attention. This wouldn't have happened in the US, as kind of shown by what happened when a JetBlue pilot had a psychotic break mid-flight.
 
luganopirate
Posts: 48
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:11 am

Is it not just possible the lone pilot had a heart attack while his fellow pilot took a rest break and slumping forward put the plane into a dive?
 
32andBelow
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:12 am

Quoting luganopirate (Reply 97):

Is it not just possible the lone pilot had a heart attack while his fellow pilot took a rest break and slumping forward put the plane into a dive?

There is nothing to slump foward on in and a320 and you can still get into the cockpit with the code if you don't lock the door out.
 
spacecadet
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RE: Germanwings A320 Crashed Enroute BCN-DUS - Part 7

Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:18 am

Quoting wjcandee (Reply 96):
I disagree. The policies for its use need attention.

It doesn't have to be either/or. Both will probably get looked at.
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