France will begin in March a fourth search for the wreckage of Air France flight 447, which crashed into the Atlantic in 2009 en route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris with 228 people on board, officials said on Friday.
AFP - France will next month begin its fourth search for wreckage of an Air France jet that crashed in the Atlantic in 2009 with 228 people on board en route from Rio to Paris, officials said Friday.
Chronology of Air France Flight 447
All times in Paris local time (GMT+2)
00:19, Monday, June 1: Air France flight 447 leaves Rio de Janeiro airport
03:30, Monday, June 1: Last radio contact between plane and Brazilian traffic control
04:00, Monday, June 1: AF 447 enters a zone of heavy turbulence
04:15, Monday, June 1: Plane sends out an automatic message signalling a fault in the aircraft
07:00, Monday, June 1: Air France concludes there are problems with flight 447, but at this stage the pilot still has enough fuel to stay in air
11:15, Monday, June 1: Air France flight 447 scheduled to land in Paris CDG airport. Air France opens crisis centre for relatives and loved ones of people on board
The hunt will begin around March 20 and will be "a systematic exploration of a zone of around 10,000 square kilometers (3,900 square miles)" using a German mini-submarine that will be taken to the area on a ship, they said.
The search could last until July, France's BEA air-accident investigation said in a statement.
A third search of the ocean floor to try to locate the black box flight recorders ended in failure last May.
Flight 447 from Rio de Janeiro to Paris went down roughly midway between Brazil and Senegal on June 1, 2009 in the deadliest crash in Air France's history.
The crash, which was partially blamed on the aircraft's malfunctioning speed sensors, claimed the lives of all 228 people on board, of more than 30 nationalities. Most of those killed were French, Brazilian and German.
Air France was in December ordered to pay 727,000 dollars (540,000 euros) to relatives of a Brazilian family that died in the accident.
The airline, through its insurers, had made compensation payments to the relatives of the passengers and crew, but continues to defend itself from litigation in Brazil.
Date created : 2011-02-04