Tags: America's Forum | Exclusive Interviews | Alan Diehl | Germanwings | pilot | mental illness

Ex-NTSB Inspector: Impossible to Detect All Pilot Mental Issues

By    |   Friday, 27 Mar 2015 12:17 PM

Aviation medical examiners are trained to recognize signs of psychological problems in commercial pilots, but it is impossible to detect every possible issue, says former National Transportation Safety Board inspector Alan Diehl, who appeared on Newsmax TV's "America's Forum" on Friday to discuss the Germanwings crash and the co-pilot who reportedly brought the plane down on purpose.

"Obviously it's an extremely rare problem," said Diehl, adding that the flying public should not be overly concerned that something similar will happen anytime soon.

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"They've got more chance of dying from an infected bee sting or something like that than falling victim to a demented airline pilot," said Diehl, author of "Air Safety Investigators: Using Science to Save Lives - One Crash at a Time".

What will need to be looked into, he added, is how pilots struggling with mental health issues can seek help without fear of losing their jobs.

Andreas Lubitz, the co-pilot, suffered from depression and anxiety and experienced a "serious depressive episode," according to reports. Lubitz reportedly hid medical notes from his employer, which is a subsidiary of Lufthansa.

All 150 people aboard the Airbus A320 perished when Lubitz steered the plane into the French Alps as the locked-out captain attempted get back into the flight deck.

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Aviation medical examiners are trained to recognize signs of psychological problems in commercial pilots, but it is impossible to detect every possible issue, according to former National Transportation Safety Board inspector Alan Diehl.
Alan Diehl, Germanwings, pilot, mental illness
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2015-17-27
Friday, 27 Mar 2015 12:17 PM
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