Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

REPORTERS

Exclusive: an unlikely victim of the 'War on Terror'

Read more

FASHION

Paris, Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2014-2015.

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

2014-07-11 21:47 AFRICA NEWS

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Finally, a good use for new app "Yo"

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 11 July 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 11 July 2014

Read more

#THE 51%

Sweden: A Feminist's Paradise?

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Politics: parties under pressure

Read more

FOCUS

In Burma, the rise of radical Buddhism

Read more

  • Hamas and Israel sustain fire despite missed targets

    Read more

  • The third-place playoff: the World Cup game no one wants to play

    Read more

  • Last of the Ramones, Tommy Ramone, dies aged 62

    Read more

  • Ukraine promises retaliation after rebel assault

    Read more

  • Putin revives old Cuban flame and eyes Latin American minerals

    Read more

  • Kerry holds all-night talks with Afghan presidential rivals

    Read more

  • Amazon snubs French free delivery ban with one-cent charge

    Read more

  • Cleveland's NBA fans hail 'return of king' LeBron James

    Read more

  • Exclusive: an unlikely victim of the 'War on Terror'

    Read more

  • Magnitude 6.8 quake, small tsunami hit east Japan

    Read more

  • Suspect in Brussels Jewish Museum shooting drops extradition appeal

    Read more

  • Kurdish forces take over two oilfields in northern Iraq

    Read more

  • Are French high school students getting smarter?

    Read more

  • Italy’s Trentin wins seventh stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • In pictures: Chanel, Dior and so much more at the Paris couture shows

    Read more

France

Tail section, 24 bodies recovered from crash site

©

Video by Marian HENBEST

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-06-09

Searchers have recovered 24 bodies and a section of the tail fin of the Air France 447 jet that disappeared into the Atlantic Ocean nearly a week ago, while investigators probe whether a defective speedometer caused the tragedy.

AFP - Brazil on Monday recovered the tail fin belonging to the Air France jet that plunged into the Atlantic a week ago killing 228 people, as well as more human remains from the doomed flight.

Twenty-four bodies so far have been fished out of the Atlantic, Brazilian officials said.

The tail fin discovery is the most important element to date in the quest to find out why the Airbus A330 went down June 1 as it flew from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. No distress call was received from the pilots.

The plane's black boxes were mounted in the tail section, and the fin's location could narrow the underwater search for those devices by a French submarine expected to arrive in the zone on Wednesday.

A Brazilian frigate was expected early Tuesday in the Fernando de Noronha archipelago carrying the first 16 bodies along with airplane debris, air force spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Henry Munhoz told reporters.

From there, the bodies and debris will be taken to the mainland coastal city of Recife, where investigators hope to identify the remains by checking dental records and DNA samples provided by relatives.

In Recife French investigators will also pore over the plane's components.

The other bodies would follow "at an appropriate time," according to an air force statement.

Brazilian and French teams continued to scour the crash zone 1,100 kilometers (700 miles) off Brazil's northeast coast for more bodies and pieces of wreckage.

The clock is ticking for finding the black boxes, believed to lie on the sea floor at a depth of up to 6,000 meters (19,700 feet). Their homing beacons will cease to operate in three weeks.

The US Navy said on Sunday it would send two towable pinger locators and a crew of around 20 to the scene later this week to join the hunt for the devices.

If the voice and data recorders are found, a French research sub -- the same one that has explored the wreck of the Titanic -- will be deployed to recover them. That small sub, the Nautile, is also expected to arrive within days.

The disaster is the worst aviation accident since 2001, and unprecedented in Air France's 75-year history.

Early suspicions are focusing on the Airbus A330's airspeed sensors, which appear to have malfunctioned in the minutes before the catastrophe, according to some of the 24 automatic data warnings sent by the plane.

Investigators are looking at whether the sensors, known as pitots, could have iced over, possibly leading the Air France pilots to fly into a storm in the zone that day without knowing their airspeed.

France's transport minister Dominique Bussereau said on the weekend that could have led the pilots to set the plane at "too low a speed, which can cause it to stall, or too high a speed, which can lead to the plane ripping up as it approached the speed of sound, as the outer skin is not designed to resist such speed."

An internal Air France memo dated November 2008 and seen by AFP mentions "a significant number of incidents" related to the pitots.

A US airline, US Airways, said Monday it was replacing the pitots on its nine Airbus A330-300s.
 

Date created : 2009-06-09

Comments

COMMENT(S)