Search Teams Hunt For EgyptAir Black Boxes | Independent Newspapers Limited
Newsletter subscribe

Latest News

Search Teams Hunt For EgyptAir Black Boxes

Egyptair search
Posted: May 21, 2016 at 9:07 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Search teams scoured the Mediterranean Saturday for more wreckage and the black boxes from EgyptAir flight MS804 for clues on why the plane plummeted and turned full circle before disappearing off radar.

An EgyptAir official said the search was focused on finding the bodies of the passengers and the Airbus A320’s flight recorders, which will stop emitting a signal in a month when the batteries run out.

The plane carrying 66 passengers plunged into the Mediterranean early Thursday while flying from Paris to Cairo.

While Egypt’s aviation minister has pointed to terrorism as more likely than technical failure, French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said there was “absolutely no indication” of why the plane went down.

“We’re looking at all possibilities,” he said, as reports indicated there had been smoke on board and an apparent problem with the flight control system just before it went down.

The disaster comes just seven months after the bombing of a Russian passenger jet by the Islamic State jihadist group over Egypt’s Sinai peninsula in October that killed all 224 people on board.

Families of the passengers on the EgyptAir flight gathered at a hotel near Cairo airport after meeting airline officials as they struggled to come to terms with the catastrophe.

“They haven’t died yet. No one knows. We’re asking for God’s mercy,” said a woman in her 50s whose daughter had been on board.

On Saturday, EgyptAir Holding Company chairman Safwat Moslem told AFP that the priority was finding the passengers’ remains and the black boxes.

“The families want the bodies. That is what concerns us. The army is working on this. This is what we are focusing on,” he said.

French investigators met their Egyptian counterparts in Cairo, while a French patrol boat carrying equipment capable of tracing the plane’s black boxes was expected on Sunday or Monday.

The plane disappeared between the Greek island of Karpathos and the Egyptian coast in the early hours of Thursday, without its crew sending a distress signal.