Did the US miss a chance to stop suicidal German pilot?

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. safety regulators initially declined to grant a medical clearance for a German pilot who five years later deliberately flew an airliner full of people into a mountainside in the French Alps. A lawyer for victims' families says they missed a chance to head off the disaster.

Federal Aviation Administration records and a report this week by French air crash investigators show that Andreas Lubitz applied to the FAA for a student pilot medical certificate in June 2010 as he prepared to come to the U.S for flight training at Lufthansa's flight school in Arizona.

Lubitz initially told the FAA he hadn't been treated for any mental disorders, even though he had been treated for depression. The FAA later granted the certificate after Lubitz provided doctors' statements.