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New Search for Recorders on Fatal Air France Flight


A French survey vessel has begun scanning the ocean floor for flight data recorders (black boxes) from an Air France passenger jet that crashed in the South Atlantic early last month.

Investigators announced Thursday that a vessel (the Pourquoi Pas?) from a French oceanographic institute is searching for recorders that are no longer emitting distress signals. The recorders are believed to be sitting on the ocean floor at depths of at least 3,000 meters near the crash site some 1,000 kilometers off Brazil's east coast.

Flight 447 from Rio de Janeiro to Paris crashed June 1, killing all 228 people on board. The data recorders would have information from the final minutes of the flight, and were built to send emergency signals for at least 30 days after an accident.

The manufacturer of the airplane, Airbus, has pledged up to $28 million to help find the recorders.

Only a small amount of wreckage and fewer than a quarter of the bodies have been recovered.

Evidence from recovered wreckage indicates that the plane broke apart on impact with the water.

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