|Posted by George Freund on May 22, 2015 at 3:40 PM|
The plane was carrying 162 people from Surabaya to Singapore when it crashed in the Java Sea last year
Engineer had worked on plane like that which crashed, inquest told
He had nothing to do with crash, but developed 'irrational' idea he did
His employers explained he was wrong but he was 'obsessed', hearing told
Coroner finds 'irrational thoughts triggered low mood' which led to suicide
By RICHARD SPILLETT FOR MAILONLINE
PUBLISHED: 16:26 GMT, 22 May 2015 | UPDATED: 17:57 GMT, 22 May 2015
An aircraft engineer who developed an 'utterly irrational' obsession with the idea he caused an air crash took his own life, an inquest has heard.
Gavin Price Jones, of Saltney, Cheshire, had worked on Airbus A320 aircraft like that involved in AirAsia disaster, in which 162 died when the plane crashed into the Java Sea between Surabaya and Singapore last December.
Family members at his inquest described how the engineer was 'driven mad' by thoughts that he may have contributed to the accident.
A engineer who worked at the Airbus plant in Flintshire (pictured in file photo) killed himself after developing an irrational obsession with the idea that he had caused a plane crash, a inquest has heard
Mr Jones's wife Louise found her husband - who worked for Airbus in Broughton, Flintshire - hanged in January 20 this year. A note had been left nearby.
The hearing at West Cheshire Magistrates Court heard had become depressed due to a combination of his fixation on having caused the crash, the death of his father and a difficult conversation in which he talked a friend out of suicide.
Giving evidence at the inquest, held at West Cheshire Magistrates Court, his wife said: 'The AirAsia flight that came down just after Christmas was an Airbus A320, which is what he works on.
'He thought he was to blame for that aircraft going down. These thoughts drove him mad. He was obsessed.'
Mrs Jones said she had spoken to her husband about the issues and explained he would draw technical pictures to demonstrate 'how he was to blame' for the air crash.
Gavin Price Jones had worked on the Airbus A320 (pictured in file photo) like that involved in the accident but had nothing to do with the crash, a coroner said
She arranged for the 37-year-old to speak to the head of quality and safety at work, who attempted to reassure Mr Jones he was not at fault, but to no avail.
'It got steadily worse over time,' she said. 'It was all he thought about.'
Mr Jones' mother, Susan, said he had also talked to her son about his belief he was to blame for the air disaster a week or so before he died.
'When he told me, I knew that he was ill,' she said.
On the morning his death he told his mother he was going for a walk and 'seemed fine' when his wife left with her young son, the hearing was told.
'He was a quiet person anyway. He kissed me goodbye and then I went,' she said.
Alan Moore, assistant coroner for Cheshire, concluded Mr Jones took his own life while the balance of his mind was disturbed.
Mr Moore said: 'For reasons only known to Gavin, he formed the belief he was somehow involved in the [AirAsia] disaster.
'His employers and national media events would indicate this was completely and utterly irrational. Gavin played no part in that disaster, but he must have believed he did.
'These irrational thoughts triggered low mood and anxiety. It seems to have become all-consuming.
'His family and friends had no idea what was about to happen. They couldn't have known of his intentions.'
The Indonesian national transportation safety committee is investigating the AirAsia disaster. It is thought the plane was climbing rapidly in an attempted to fly over a storm when it crashed.
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