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.