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Worldwide, Airlines Respond to Tragedy with New Rules

We try to learn from tragedy. The crash of Colgan Air Flight 3407 in 2009 prompted changes in flight crew working conditions. Last year, the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 spurred conversation about modernizing flight tracking technology. And the widespread adoption of the “rule of two” seems to be one of the likely effects of last week’s crash of a Germanwings flight.

The idea that more than one person should remain in the cockpit is not a new one. U.S. airlines already have a rule that at least two crew members must remain in the cockpit at all times, but other airlines, countries, and airline safety agencies are now moving fast on instituting similar requirements.

Lufthansa has announced that all of its carriers—including Germanwings, Austrian Airlines, and Lufthansa—will require two authorized crew members in the cockpit at all times. The European Aviation Safety Agency has recommended that all European airlines institute similar rules. Around the world, dozens of airlines as well as the government of Australia have responded to the crash with new requirements to prevent one person from being in the cockpit alone during flights.

Do you think more airlines imposing cockpit rules like this will make flights safer?

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