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Australia Unveils Cockpit Rules after Germanwings Crash

Australia has responded to the Germanwings air disaster by mandating that at least two crew members be present at all times in cockpits of larger domestic and international airliners.

Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss said that airlines, including Qantas and Virgin Australia, would implement the changed security protocols from Monday afternoon.

It would apply to all commercial flights with at least two flight attendants or more than 50 passengers. A flight attendant would enter the cockpit if one of the two pilots left it for any reason.

Previously, most Australian airlines have allowed their pilots to be alone on the flight deck.

French prosecutors blame co-pilot Andreas Lubitz, 27, for the crash of Flight 9525 that claimed 150 lives in southern France last week. The cockpit voice recorder has revealed that the pilot had been shut out of the cockpit when the Airbus A320 crashed.

Truss said there were already mental illnesses that stopped sufferers from being pilots in Australia, and that pilots’ health was regularly assessed.

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