German parliament toughens drug controls for pilots

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

BERLIN (AP) — Germany's parliament has toughened the rules regarding alcohol and drug use by pilots following the suicidal crash of a co-pilot who flew a Germanwings plane into a mountainside in the French Alps last year.

The German news agency dpa reported Thursday that according to the new law, the airlines have to check pilots at the start of their shifts if there is a relevant indication that they may be under the influence of medication, alcohol or other psychoactive substances. There will also be random controls in the future.

On March 24, 2015, co-pilot Andreas Lubitz locked Germanwings Flight 9525's captain out of the cockpit and deliberately set the plane on a collision course with the mountain. All 150 people aboard, including Lubitz, were killed.