Germanwings Pilot Was Locked Out of Cockpit Before Crash in France

PARIS — As officials struggled Wednesday to explain why a jet with 150 people on board crashed in relatively clear skies, an investigator said evidence from a cockpit voice recorder indicated one pilot left the cockpit before the plane’s descent and was unable to get back in.

A senior military official involved in the investigation described “very smooth, very cool” conversation between the pilots during the early part of the flight from Barcelona to Düsseldorf. Then the audio indicated that one of the pilots left the cockpit and could not re-enter.

“The guy outside is knocking lightly on the door and there is no answer,” the investigator said. “And then he hits the door stronger and no answer. There is never an answer.”

From the DailyMail – Pilot of doomed Flight 4U 9525 jet was ‘locked out of cockpit before crash’, black box recorder reveals

One of the two pilots on board the ill-fated Germanwings plane was locked out of the cockpit minutes before the aircraft crashed into a remote region of the French Alps, it has been reported.

Audio taken from the black box voice recorder that was salvaged from the wreckage of the Airbus A320 indicates the pilot left the cockpit and could not re-enter, according to the New York Times.

The pilot is heard knocking lightly on the door of the cockpit before trying to ‘smash the door down’ when his colleague fails to answer, a senior military official told the newspaper.

The revelation is the first insight into what took place on the aircraft in the moments before the plane plummetted into the mountainside, killing all 150 people on board.

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  • Brett_McS

    Sounds like “suicide by plane”. There are a couple of Air Crash Investigation episodes that covered such a scenario, one with an Egyptian pilot and another, I think, Malaysian.

    • mobuyus

      Air Egypt was jihad.

      • Brett_McS

        Both were cases where the pilot’s life was turning to crap.

    • It could be, barring a sudden death, mechanical failure can be ruled out now it seems.

    • luna

      “Suicide” doesn’t mean killing more than 150 people. Sounds more like “Islamikaze” to me.

  • wallyj180

    Lets not jump to conclusions.
    Unless it can be 100% proven that it is a ‘religion of peace’ fanatic behind this, it is best to use the available resources to look elsewhere.

  • The plane did not have a decompression. Pilots do not leave the cockpit during an emergency or when the plane is on decent.

    Pilots can and do leave the cockpit during normal cruise.

    I’ll bet the other pilot still in the cockpit had a medical emergency or a Muslim name.

    • Brett_McS

      Or had the fish?

    • Either of those scenarios could be the answer.

      • No. Because if the co-pilot fainted, say, the plane would have flown on normally and not descended at high speed as it did. The terrorism hypothesis seems more likely in view of the plane’s behavior.

  • Ron MacDonald

    Why didn’t he have a key?

    • dukestreet

      I had this discussion with my spouse, who works for an airline. I think the pilots and maybe the head of the the head of the flight crew, should have a way to get into the flight deck in case of emergency. It could have been a medical emergency but, because the door automatically locks behind them,they have no way to get back in if the person at the controls is unable to let them in. Access should be very limited but, maybe an alternative(secret) way in, would have saved lives in this instance.

      • Censored_often

        A “Muslim” medical emergency, by any chance?

        • They haven’t released the pilot names yet which seems very odd.

          • The longer it takes to release the name of the pilot who remained in the cockpit, the more likely it is a Muslim name.

    • The lock mechanism is controlled by a toggle switch in the cockpit.

    • Obviously, he cannot have a key – or else a terrorist passenger would get his key from him and open the cockpit door.

  • Petrilia

    Was it terrorism?

  • Gary

    Since the 9/11 conspiracy nuts blame the event on missiles that hit the Pentagon because of the lack of plane parts , this too must be a conspiracy from the lack of Plane parts.

  • Ron MacDonald
    • What has to be remembered is how devastating this would be to European air travel and tourism if it was suspected to be an act of terrorism.

      At this point I will lean to the pilot becoming incapacitated for whatever reason.

      However I still want to know the pilots name.

      • cmh

        you nailed it because that is the goal….financial ruin.

      • Censored_often

        Who is sane at this points who wishes to visit Eurabia? I’ve posted previously about this obvious issue.

      • At the present time I would not fly on an airline operated out of a Muslim country. I also would not fly on any airplane if I knew the pilot was a Muslim.

        • I certainly avoid all Muslim countries. The trouble is, we are never told in advance (before we buy a ticket) whether the flight crew might include Muslims.

  • cmh

    Something even more frightening is listening to liberal Wayne Easter and the presenters at the Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security which was taking place this evening. One guest in particular that i found extremely antithetical to our Canadian way of life was Zuhdi Jasser from the ‘American Islamic Forum for Democracy’. The panel seemed to love him but his vision of combating terror is worrisome and would warrant a complete ideological change to our society. His ideas are better suited to an Islamic society. We are really in trouble.

  • BillyHW

    Remember folks, the only reason we had to put locks on these doors in the first place was because of filthy disguting devout muslims.

    • It was the multicultural thing to do.

    • Censored_often

      Allah ackbar! Islam made me do it! Satan made me do it!

    • Good point. Yet they make no effort to exclude Muslims from pilot or co-pilot positions, or from being flight attendants. Indeed, in my city, most airport security personnel seem to be Muslims!

      • Censored_often

        The muzzie wolf guarding the infidel henhouse?

  • Clink9

    Do they normally delay releasing the names of the flight crew?

    • Not to my knowledge, I searched and could find no mention of their names.

  • Evidently this is the US procedure for a pilot leaving the cockpit, don’t know if it applies to Europe:

    Step 1, call the flight attendant and ask if it is a reasonable time to come out of the cockpit. A flight attendant MUST then present him/herself in front of the door so the exiting pilot can tell if they are ready and not have a passenger next to them.

    Step 2, Open the door to further identify the crew member and have them step into the cockpit.

    Step 3 Exit the cockpit and close the door (it is always locked).

    Step 4. upon pilot return, call the cockpit and have the flight attendant id the pilot (peep hole in door). Door is opened and the pilot enters the cockpit and flight attendant leaves. AT NO TIME IS A PILOT ALLOWED IN COCKPIT SOLO.

    • Good point. I’ve seen that happen. This would mean that a flight attendant would be in the cabin with the co-pilot. Thus if the co-pilot was a terrorist or suicidal person, as appears to be the case, he would have neutralized the flight attendant, unless the latter was an accomplice.

      I suspect now that the co-pilot was an Islamic terrorist, as so far his nationality or racial/religious identity have been carefully left unmentioned. We shall see soon. If that is the case, then all air personnel that is of Muslim extraction should be kept away from commercial airlines. Will our “nothing to do with Islam” authorities do that, or even at least tell passengers in whose hands they are putting their lives? I doubt it. Get ready then for some Russian roulette holiday experiences.

  • Brett_McS

    Some Instapundit commentors have noted that Airbuses have a system for the pilot to re-enter a cockpit by entering a code. However, that system can be disabled by the pilot in the cockpit.

  • robins111

    Anyone wanna bet the guy left running the steering wheel was named Mo??