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Call for two-person cockpit rule
26 Mar 2015 22:10
The German aviation association BDL has said that it wants to introduce a two-person cockpit rule similar to the one implemented by many airlines, including Aer Lingus and Ryanair.
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BDL announced the plan after it emerged that the co-pilot on a Germanwings flight deliberately crashed after being left alone.
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The announcement was made by the federation's chief Matthias von Randow, a BDL spokeswoman told AFP.
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Both Irish airlines confirmed it is standard operating procedure on all its aircraft for a member of cabin crew to enter the cockpit if a pilot exits.
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Aer Lingus said this has been in operation since sealed cockpits came into being.
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This means two people are on the flight deck at all times.
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The cabin crew member will assist with opening the door if the remaining pilot were to become ill or an emergency was to occur.
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The cabin crew member must be inside the flight deck before a pilot can exit.
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In a statement, Ryanair said the airline "requires two people to be in the cockpit at all times. If a pilot needs to visit the bathroom the cabin crew supervisor is required to stand in the cockpit for these brief periods".
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Earlier, the Irish Aviation Authority has said European regulations do not require a minimum of two persons to be in the cockpit at all times.
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In a statement, IAA said it has approved procedures with Irish airlines to ensure that there are a minimum of two persons in the cockpit at all times during flight.
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The purpose of this is to deal with circumstances where a member of the flight deck crew may become incapacitated or security related issues.
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These procedures apply to all aircraft where EASA regulations require a locked cockpit door.
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But it is understood that how it is implemented is up to each individual airline.
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