Flight AF 447 went missing during a flight from Rio de Janeiro to Paris on
June 1. The exact cause of the disaster is not yet known.
“The plane was not destroyed while it was in flight. It seems to have hit the
surface of the water in the direction of flight and with a strong vertical
acceleration,” said Alain Bouillard, who is leading the investigation on
behalf of France’s BEA air accident board.
He said the pilots of flight AF 447 had tried three times to connect to a data
system in the Senegalese capital Dakar, but had failed, apparently because
Dakar had never received the flight plan.
“This is not normal,” he said, adding that investigators were also trying to
find out why it took six hours after the plane disappeared before an
emergency was declared.
He said the search for the flight recorders, or black boxes, from the Airbus
A330 aircraft would continue until July 10. The recorders emit a signal for
a limited time.
He also reiterated that France had not yet been granted access to autopsy
reports on bodies taken to Brazil.
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