Air France Flight 447 – black box data preserved

17th May 2011
Air France Flight 447 – black box data preserved

All flight data from Air France flight 447 that crashed into the Atlantic in 2009 has been preserved in the aircraft’s black box recorders, French aviation authorities have confirmed.

The announcement comes after investigators said it recovered the data from the recorders, pulled from the ocean floor after a search lasting almost two years.

“Following operations to open, extract, clean and dry the memory cards from the flight recorders, BEA safety investigators were able to download the data over the weekend,” the authorities said in a statement.

“These downloads gathered all of the data from the flight data recorder, as well as the whole recording of the last two hours of the flight from the cockpit voice recorder.”

The Airbus A330 crashed off the coast of Brail whilst flying from Rio de Janeiro to Paris on 1 June 2009. However it was only last month that investigators found the main wreckage.


“In the framework of the safety investigation directed by the BEA, all of this data will now be subjected to detailed, in-depth analysis,” the statement said.

“This work will take several weeks, after which a further interim report will be written and then published during the summer.”

Investigators say the cause of the accident remains unconfirmed, but interim inquiry results has pointed to the jet’s air speed probes or “Pitots” icing up.

Since the accident, Air France has replaced the Pitots on its Airbus fleet with a newer model. But the families of the victims have accused the airline of reacting too slowly to safety warnings.
Both Airbus and Air France insist they reacted properly, and both companies are awaiting the results of the BEA inquiry.


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