Second Black Box Concerning China Eastern Boeing 737-800 Plane Crash has been Discovered
The black box from a China Eastern Boeing 737-800 was discovered on Sunday, hoping it will reveal why the passenger plane crashed into a remote mountainous area in southern China last week, killing all 132 people on board. According to state media, firefighters searching for the flight data recorder discovered it on a mountain slope about 40 metres (130 feet) from the point of impact and 1.5 metres (5 feet) underground. It was the second black box, as per the experts. The crash resulted in a 20-meter (65-foot) bottomless pit in the side of the mountain and scattered debris widely.
After discovering the cockpit voice recorder four days ago, searchers turned their attention to the data recorder. The two black boxes should aid investigators in determining what caused the plane to plummet from 29,000 feet (8,800 metres) about one hour into the flight, just before it began its descent.
The black boxes and wreckage inquiries have been hampered by the remote location and rainy and muddy conditions. Images posted by CGTN, CCTV's international arm, showed an official on-site holding an orange cylindrical object with the words Flight recorder and do not open written on it. It appeared to be slightly dented but otherwise undamaged. The search was called off Sunday afternoon for a three-minute moment of silence in memory of the 123 passengers and nine crew members. Emergency personnel removed their helmets while police and soldiers removed their caps. As sirens blared, they stood in formation and bowed their heads.
The China Eastern Boeing 737-800 was on its way from Kunming, in southeastern China, to Guangzhou, a major city and export manufacturing hub near Hong Kong. After seeing the plane's altitude drop sharply, an air traffic controller attempted to contact the pilots several times but received no response.
On Wednesday, the cockpit voice recorder, also an orange cylinder, was discovered two days later. It was sent to a Beijing laboratory for examination and analysis, and the flight data recorder was also sent to Beijing for decoding. For days, search teams have been combing the site outside of Wuzhou with shovels and other hand tools. Machines have been brought in to remove earth and clear wider passageways to the site, and pumps are being used to drain rainwater collected. Officials stated that monitors had been installed to detect potential landslides caused by the rain and search and rescue activity that could endanger the workers.
Late Saturday, officials announced that there were no survivors. According to them, DNA analysis has confirmed the identities of 120 of the people on board. Bank cards and ID belonging to the victims have been discovered by searchers. In a statement, Boeing stated that a Boeing technical team is assisting the US National Transportation Safety Board and the Chinese Civil Aviation Administration, which will lead the investigation into the crash.
The China Eastern, one of China's four major airlines, and its subsidiaries have grounded all 223 of their Boeing 737-800s. As per the carrier, the landing was purely on a precautionary basis and not a warning of difficulty with the planes.