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Gov't orders airlines to keep 2 crew in cockpit at all times after German plane crash

6 Comments

The Ministry of Transport has issued a directive to Japanese airlines to have two crew members in the cockpit at all times during flights.

The order comes in response to the crash of a Germanwings plane earlier this year when the co-pilot locked the pilot out of the cockpit and deliberately crashed the plane.

In line with a recommendation made in Europe by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), Transport Minister Akihiro Ota said he has asked all Japanese airlines to implement the new rule from May 1, Fuji TV reported.

In the event that one pilot needs to use the restroom, a flight attendant would be required to enter the cockpit as a stand-in, should no other pilot be available.

The new regulation will not, however, apply to foreign airlines flying into Japan.

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6 Comments
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What about planes that only have one pilot?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

That's already been the policy in the US and now Europe too, so that's much of the foreign airlines already.

What about planes that only have one pilot?

Those are typically small planes, not airliners, so may be exempt.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

How do you use the loo?

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

gogogo: "How do you use the loo?"

It says above that if a pilot has to use the washroom a flight attendant would have to stand in... the cockpit, not the washroom... and that would probably only apply to long distance, international flights (or 'emergencies'). I'm not sure what said flight attendant would be able to do if the remaining pilot goes nuts or becomes unconscious, but at least it would keep the doors from being unable to be opened.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

my GF is a chief for ANA and all 5'4 105 pounds of her wont be able handle a bitch slap from any pilot. This is actually pretty lame. The airlines should proactively have a male FA or CA handle cockpit duties if they insist on having a non cockpit member in there. Makes absolutely no sense.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

What about planes that only have one pilot?

This rule applies to commercial airlines. All airlines must have two pilots in the cockpit during the flight. I, in my rented Piper Warrior II, am not covered by this rule.

How do you use the loo?

I witnessed this on a United flight a year or so ago. It's quite a choreographed dance:

1.) Cockpit notifies the flight attendant who has been designated as the stand-in that a "potty break" is about to occur. 2.) Flight attendant checks that the forward toilets are empty of passengers, then pulls one of the drink carts from the forward galley and blocks the aisle with it between 1st class and the forward toilets. A second flight attendant "mans' the drink cart to prevent it being moved. Any 1st class passengers needing to use the toilet will have to use the aft toilets during this time. 3.) The designated stand-in calls the cockpit and notifies them that preparations are completed. 4.) Pilot #1 opens the cockpit door and exchanges places with designated stand-in. Cockpit door is closed and locked. 5.) Pilot #1 takes care of business, then calls the cockpit to be let back in. 6.) Stand-in opens the cockpit door and exchanges places with Pilot #1, then exchanges places with Pilot #2. Cockpit door is closed and locked. 7.) Pilot #2 takes care of business, then calls the cockpit to be let back in. 8.) Pilot #2 exchanges places with the stand-in. The cockpit door is closed and locked one final time. 9.) Flight attendants return the drink cart to galley stowage, and the forward toilets are once again available for passenger use.

The airlines should proactively have a male FA or CA handle cockpit duties if they insist on having a non cockpit member in there. Makes absolutely no sense.

The designated stand-in on my flight was a beefy woman who definitely could hold her own against someone who wanted to get physical. Regarding male or female, some of the wimpy male pilots/flight attendants wouldn't do well defending against a nutter pilot either.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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