News World Pilot’s actions were deliberate

Pilot’s actions were deliberate

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Information from the second black box found in the wreckage of the Germanwings flight that crashed in the French Alps confirms co-pilot Andreas Lubitz acted deliberately, investigators say.

“A first reading shows that the pilot in the cockpit used the automatic pilot to descend the plane towards an altitude of 30 metres,” said the French BEA crash investigation office in a statement.

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“Then, several times during the descent, the pilot changed the automatic pilot settings to increase the aircraft’s speed,” added the investigators.

Authorities found the second black box, which contains technical flight data, on Thursday after a gruelling nine-day search in difficult mountain terrain.

The latest information appeared to confirm the theory that the co-pilot deliberately smashed his plane into the mountains, killing all 150 people on board.

The box, found blackened and buried deep in the mountain scree, was transported to Paris late Thursday where specialist investigators began to analyse the data.

“Work is continuing to determine the precise sequence of events during the flight,” the BEA said.

Data from the first black box, which records conversations in the cockpit, suggested that Mr Lubitz, 27,locked his captain out and then deliberately set the plane on a deadly collision course with the mountains.

The plane smashed into the mountains at a speed of 700 kph, instantly killing everyone on board, half of them German and more than 50 from Spain.

Officer finds black box first day on the job

After ten grim days for the Germanwings search team Alice Coldefy, the only woman working at the crash site, found the crucial missing second black box on her first day on the job.

“It was a relief … a relief for all the people that had been working there for a week-and-a-half without a break,” the 32-year-old told AFP news agency.

Ms Coldefy is the only woman in the team of 43 elite mountain police (PGHM) charged with recovering body parts from the plane wreckage.

“I was really concentrating on [finding] personal effects. We were trying to get into areas that hadn’t yet been searched to find as many clothes as we could,” she said.

“And it was while I was looking for clothes that I found it.”

Blackened from fire, it was especially difficult to spot as it was the same colour as the surrounding rock.

“We had a photo of the black box from various angles. We got it out, compared it to what we had found and it was indeed that,” she said.

Co-pilot’s computer reveals searches on suicide

It emerged on Thursday that Mr Lubitz had searched online for information about suicide and cockpit doors.

German prosecutors also said he was diagnosed as suicidal “several years ago”, before he became a pilot.

Lufthansa, the parent company of budget carrier Germanwings, has come under huge pressure since the crash after it was revealed the co-pilot had told his bosses that he had suffered from severe depression.

The German flag carrier said Mr Lubitz told the airline in 2009 about his illness after interrupting his flight training.

Doctors had recently found no sign that he intended to hurt himself or others, but he was receiving treatment from neurologists and psychiatrists who had signed him off sick from work a number of times, including on the day of the crash.

Police found torn-up sick notes during a search of his apartment after the crash.

The first black box suggested people were only aware of what was to happen to them in the final seconds.

However, French and German media claim to have seen a video purportedly showing the final moments aboard the doomed airliner, which they said was shot on a mobile phone that somehow survived the crash.

The purported video reportedly shows a chaotic scene with people screaming “my God” in several different languages.

Several airlines and countries around the world have since ruled that two authorised crew members must be present in the cockpit at all times.