“Open the damn door!”
Point of view
Open the damn door!
These are reportedly the desperate last words of the Germanwings captain as he tried to get back into the locked cockpit of the passenger plane crashed by his co-pilot in the French Alps on Tuesday, killing all 150 people on board.
In transcripts from Black Box recordings – reported in the German press as more details emerge about troubled Andreas Lubitz – passengers are also heard screaming as the terrifying scene unfolds.
Mass circulation Bild am Sonntag reported that the voice recorder data from the doomed Airbus A320, en route from Barcelona to Duesseldorf, showed the locked-out captain said to his colleague inside the cockpit: “For God’s sake, open the door”.
The pilot can then be heard trying to smash the door down with a metal object. Even when he yells: “Open the damn door!” Lubitz does not give an answer as passengers’ screams can be heard in the background just seconds before the fatal crash, the paper said.
Bild am Sonntag also reported that investigators found evidence that Lubitz feared losing his eyesight apparently because of a detached retina. However, it was unclear whether this was due to an organic failure or psychosomatic illness, when physical problems are thought to be caused or aggravated by psychological factors such as stress.
Another German newspaper, Welt am Sonntag, quoted a senior investigator as saying that Lubitz, 27, “was treated by several neurologists and psychiatrists”, adding that a number of medications had been found in his apartment in the German city of Duesseldorf.
German authorities said on Friday they had found torn-up sick notes showing the co-pilot had been suffering from an illness that should have grounded him on the day of the tragedy. Germanwings, the budget airline of the flag carrier Lufthansa, has said he did not submit a sick note at the time.
Bild am Sonntag also reported that Lubitz’s girlfriend, a teacher at a secondary school in a small town near Duesseldorf, recently told students that she was expecting a baby.