Saturday 18 June 2016

EgyptAir black boxes found but badly damaged

The voice and data recorders from the EgyptAir plane that crashed into the Mediterranean nearly a month ago are "extensively damaged" and will need repairs before they can be analysed.
Dampening hopes for quick answers as to what caused the disaster, an Egyptian official didn't elaborate on how long the repairs would take but said if this cannot be done in Egypt, the boxes would be sent abroad.
With the flight's wreckage 3,000 metres under water, the cockpit voice and flight data recorders are vital for piecing together the last moments of the flight, which plunged into the sea between the Greek island of Crete and the Egyptian port city of Alexandria on May 19, killing all 66 on board.
Earlier in the day, Egypt's investigation commission said the flight data recorder had been pulled out of the sea, a day after the cockpit voice recorder was also recovered.
The memory units inside the recorders can provide key data, including the last conversations inside the cockpit, information about auto-pilot mode or even smoke alarms.
They might also give answers to why the pilot made no distress call before the crash.
Experts say the data, combined with previously obtained satellite and radar images, debris analysis, the plane history and the pilots' records, can shed light on the most possible scenarios.
The cause of the crash of the Airbus A320 has not been determined and no militant group has claimed bringing down the aircraft.
Both France and the United States are sending investigators to Cairo to help with the probe.
EgyptAir Flight 804 en route to Cairo from Paris disappeared May 19 from radar at about 2:45 a.m local time, just as it had entered Egyptian airspace.
Radar data showed the aircraft had made violent moves after cruising normally in clear skies, plummeting from 11,582 metres to 4,572 metres and disappearing when it was at an altitude of about 3,048 metres.
Egypt's civil aviation minister, Sherif Fathi, has said terrorism is a more probable cause than equipment failure or some other catastrophic event.

Story sourced from here

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