It’s a bit of a slow news week thanks to the extended Easter holiday in Germany, but this update did catch my attention.
Germanwings announced that it was suspending flights to two of their destinations from Hamburg:
Hamburg – Birmingham effective June 12 is CANCELLED.
Hamburg – Geneva effective May 29 is CANCELLED.
Over the last few days, Eurowings has updated their timetable to reflect the launch of several new routes for the Fall/Winter of 2017/18. The routes are primarily seasonal, either bringing passengers to warmer climates or taking them to winter hot spots for skiing.
Some of the flights will be operated by the aircraft that have been wet-leased by Lufthansa from Air Berlin, while others will fly under Germanwings flight numbers and aircraft.
The new routes are as follow:
Cologne – Grenoble effective October 29 will begin 1x/week service (Sunday).
Dusseldorf – Marrakech effective November 4 will begin 1x/week service (Saturday).
Dusseldorf – Zagreb effective October 31 will begin 2x/week service (Tuesday / Thursday).
Munich – Barcelona effective October 29 will begin 4x/week service (Monday/Tuesday/Friday/Sunday).
Munich – Fuerteventura effective October 29 will begin 2x/week service (Tuesday / Sunday).
Munich – Lanzarote effective November 1 will begin 1x/week service (Wednesday).
Munich – Las Palmas effective October 31 will begin 2x/week service (Tuesday / Saturday).
Munich – Marrakech effective November 3 will begin 1x/week service (Friday).
Munich – Skopje effective October 31 will begin 2x/week service (Tuesday / Friday).
Munich – Tenerife South effective October 30 will begin 2x/week service (Monday / Thursday).
Salzburg – Birmingham effective October 30 will begin 2x/week service (Thursday / Saturday).
Salzburg – Glasgow effective December 9 will begin 1x/week service (Wednesday).
Salzburg – London Stansted effective October 29 will begin 4x/week service (Monday/Wednesday/Friday/Sunday).
Salzburg – Manchester effective December 4 will begin 2x/week service (Monday / Friday).
To add to a week that has been full of tragedy, today marked the one year anniversary of the crash of Germanwings flight 4U9525.
Marking perhaps the darkest day in Lufthansa’s history, 144 passengers and 6 crew members lost their lives when the A320 was intentionally crashed in the French Alps, near Le Vernet. The flight had been scheduled to fly between Barcelona and Dusseldorf. Unfortunately the co-pilot, Andreas Lubitz, took it upon himself to cast the fate of the passengers and his colleagues.
If there is any silver lining to this, it does appear that aviation authorities in Germany and the EU have undertaken steps to help prevent a tragedy like this from happening again. As part of the new rules that took effect almost immediately after the crash, it is now a requirement for the cockpit to always have 2 people in it. In addition, it appears as though rules relaxing strict privacy protection will be changed so that Doctors do not have to live in fear of committing a felony if they report their patient to an employer if they suspect that their patient can be a threat to themselves or to others.
I remember the day quite clearly since the crash took place while I was asleep in a hotel room next to Paine Field in Everett, Washington awaiting to board the delivery flight of Lufthansa’s Retro-Livery 747-8i, D-ABYT, or as she is commonly referred to, ‘Yankee Tango’. The delivery flight which was supposed to be a source of celebration for Lufthansa’s 60th Anniversary turned into a memorial to those who lost their lives. And because this was a unique aircraft due to its livery, it also served as a symbol of resilience and determination to move forward.