Co-pilot had 'suicidal tendencies'?

Maybe it’s just me, but it seems that every commercial air carrier on the planet ought to do thorough psychological screenings of the men and women they hire to fly airplanes carrying passengers.

Then they should set the bar as high as possible to determine who is fight to fly those aircraft.

I pose that notion in the wake of reports out of Germany that Germanwings co-pilot Andreas Lubitz had demonstrated “suicidal tendencies” several years ago, prior to obtaining his commercial pilot’s license.

What did he do after that? Well, he apparently locked the captain of the ship out of flight deck and then flew the A320 Airbus into the French Alps, killing everyone on board.

This bit of news just takes my breath away. reported: “In the ensuing years and up until recently, he had doctors’ visits and was written off sick but showed no sign of suicidal tendencies or aggression towards others,” said Ralf Herrenbrueck, spokesman for the prosecutor’s office in the western city of Duesseldorf.

Showed no sign? Well, that bit of intelligence now seems preposterous, given what is now widely accepted as the cause of the horrific air tragedy.

When someone exhibits such tendencies, is it ever safe to assume that such tendencies would never return? Ever?

How does a psychiatrist make that determination? How does a medical professional determine that someone’s desire to kill oneself is gone forever?

This is just my opinion, sitting far away from the scene, but it looks for all the world as if the 28-year-old Lubitz had zero business being on the flight deck of that aircraft.

However, there he was, locking the captain out and then deciding to kill himself — as well as 149 innocent victims.


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