It is 11.33 clock, when the disaster reached Germany. The Reuters news agency becomes the first breaking news from: “Airbus A320 crashes over Southern France!” Shortly thereafter becomes clear: There is a German machine. The Airbus subsidiary of Lufthansa German Wings called “Mannheim” should actually still at 11.33 clock in the air somewhere over Basel, in the last kilometers on approach to Dusseldorf. The landing of flight 4U9525 was scheduled for 11.55 clock. Hours later it was so on the arrivals board at Düsseldorf Airport. But the arrival gate was already long no longer reported. There gaped just a big nothing.
members are at this point just after half past eleven have just been looking for a place in the garage, or at a flower stand a rose worried or have a balloon for a friend, aunt, son, daughter. Others may already have marched slowly towards the arrival hall to receive their loved ones or business partners due. Among the greeters were probably very many parents. But that will only become clear later.
suspect at this time very few people at Dusseldorf Airport, the terrible hours and days of her life waiting for them. However, airport employees soon begin to address discrete guests to pull out of the crowd to get into a locked, guarded by the police area. So incredible misfortune is – the Airport has an elaborate contingency plan. And the attacks immediately.
Eyewitnesses later still of dramatic scenes in public. A young woman collapsed when she heard the news of the disaster, which spread like wildfire made the rounds – and realized that exactly the flight was affected on whose arrival they waited. Later, as already filming the first reporters at the airport, says a security staff member in a yellow vest, a pair of middle-aged at, asked the two to come with her.
How instinctively looking for protection, as if to ward off the bad news anyway and be in the moment of its greatest shocks alone, the addressee inverts the anorak hood over his head. Her companion, a few steps behind, it does her after a short time later. In most terrifying moment of their lives they do not want to be filmed and ogled. Hurry hurry the three in a cordoned area. And soon after, the airport anywhere in white screen walls.
A whole class was on board
Almost every minute always spin after a tragic news from France. First comes very quickly be certain that the German Wings aircraft actually crashed. Then that 148 people have not survived. Shortly thereafter is clear: there is even 150 dead, 144 of them passengers, four crew, two pilots. It turns out that no cars or pedestrians there in 1500 meters can reach heights where the debris scattered over more than two square kilometers.
All Rescuers must be brought to the region by helicopter. This means that it might not take long until clear why a well-maintained aircraft simply went on a day with clear view, from an experienced captain with 6000 flight hours on this Airbus in the descent. Eight minutes of 1000 meters per minute. Then, to smash in the high Alps on a mountain.
It’s suddenly from Spain, at least 45 people with Spanish names were on board. Two babies. And if an increase of the drama seems no longer possible, is the almost incomprehensible message: A whole class was on board, 16 students, two teachers of Joseph King High School in Haltern
The school, which is said to have visited Ex-soccer star Christoph Metzelder, making for years with the Institute Giola in Llinars del Vallès near Barcelona an exchange. The young people were after a week in Spain on the way back. The news of the plane crash reaches the school in the early afternoon, which sets up a crisis unit immediately. Doctors and chaplains rush immediately on school grounds.
German Wings himself will say nothing about identities. The company only mentions possibly 67 dead German passengers, but the number was not sure. For this purpose, only the passenger lists must be evaluated and discussed with relatives. Finally, no passports are on such flights within Europe are read.
“What people want at the moment, is information”
There is great sadness at the departure switches, many travelers are shocked and discuss whether they should cancel their planned trip. “It’s terrible. We did not fly until we have heard the news,” said Majid Gholami, a 28-year-old engineering student from Aachen. He wanted to fly for five days in Barcelona. Above all, his sister and girlfriend had undecided whether to board the flight. Their uncertainty was increased when they were sent away to the switch 112 because their machine did not fly as scheduled.
Shortly after 15 clock leave passengers from Barcelona the arrivals area. On board were the 28-year-old Jonas Zuber and his mother Sigrid. They were started at 12.10 clock in Barcelona direction Dusseldorf and only found out after the landing of the accident. Jonas Zuber: “When we landed, the plane began tens phones to ring.”
Many relatives and friends were worried. The two had traveled from Gran Canaria over Barcelona to Dusseldorf and were also considered, to fly with the German Wings machine. The flight was temporally unfavorable, so they had chosen a different machine.
Airport Chaplains Justus Münster and his team take care of in the shielded VIP area Shocked fetcher, weeping employees, crew members, employees of German Wings.
The least he says, wanted to leave the airport, even though after confirmed crash are not expected more good news. “What people want most at the moment is information,” says the veteran pastor. “That’s why they want to be here. And it also helps to be together with other stakeholders.”
About the cause of the crash is still puzzled
between Barcelona and Berlin, the horror is huge everywhere. The young Spanish King Felipe, who is just the first state visit to Paris, the travel stops, as well as Federal President Joachim Gauck his visit to Peru. Chancellor Angela Merkel can immediately cancel all appointments for the afternoon, just as her counterpart in Madrid, Mariano Rajoy. With him and the French President François Hollande, the Chancellor has already phoned a crisis team is set up emergency hotlines are available.
Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and want to fly to France in the afternoon Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt, Merkel will follow a day later. She walks in the early afternoon for a brief statement before the cameras, has moved sure everything is black, even the chain. It speaks of “deep shock” the immeasurable suffering. To speculate on the possible cause of the crash it was not yet time.
But this speculation of course there are. About whether a bomb was to blame. Aviation experts as the ex-pilot Peter Gatz close the out quite likely. Gatz points on the N24 to the slow rate of descent, it had finally not been a radical crash. He has, however, not an explanation. The A320 was the “Golf” under the aircraft, a workhorse, reliable, without teething problems in use for decades, well maintained, at least for all German companies. And the pilots are also trained well for such incidents.
The “mirror” had recently reported an incident of November 5, wherein an on-board computer a Lufthansa Airbus had forced with 109 passengers on the route from Bilbao to Munich in a steep descent, also 1000 meters per minute, as now in flight 4U9525. Because the sensors were icy and the computer system had fed incorrect data. Only by turning off the on-board computer managed the crew to get the aircraft back under control. But German Wings does not believe in this cause: The onboard computer was exchanged
But what was it.? All hopes now rest on the flight recorder. But for the rescuers must first penetrate into the area, the French authorities describe as extremely inaccessible.