2.7.09

BEA: le vol AF447 s'est abîmé "en entier" dans l'Atlantique

L'Airbus A330-200 d'Air France reliant Rio et Paris le 1er juin "n'a pas été détruit en vol", a annoncé jeudi le Bureau d'enquêtes de d'analyses (BEA) de l'Aviation civile qui se dit "bien loin d'établir les causes de l'accident" à ce jour. Aussi, les recherches acoustiques pour retrouver les boîtes noires de l'appareil se poursuivront jusqu'au 10 juillet.

"Aujourd'hui, nous sommes bien loin d'établir les causes de l'accident", a avoué Alain Bouillard, chef d'enquête du BEA, lors d'une conférence de presse de présentation du premier rapport d'enquête du BEA sur l'accident du 1er juin. "Entre la surface de l'eau et 35.000 pieds, nous ne savons pas ce qui s'est passé".

Selon ce rapport, l'Airbus qui s'est abîmé dans l'océan Atlantique avec 228 personnes à bord "n'a pas été détruit en vol" et "paraît avoir heurté la surface de l'eau en ligne de vol, avec une forte accélération verticale", a expliqué M. Bouillard, ajoutant plus explicitement: l'appareil "est arrivé en entier au moment de l'impact".

"Les examens visuels que l'on a pu faire à Recife (Brésil) montrent que l'avion a touché (l'océan) avec le dessous du fuselage", a-t-il poursuivi, relevant notamment que les planchers de la cabine du module de repos des hôtesses et stewards "étaient déformés du bas vers le haut".

Par ailleurs, on n'a retrouvé "ni traces d'incendie ni traces d'explosif", a dit le chef d'enquête du BEA, ajoutant par ailleurs que les sondes Pitot "ne sont pas écartées de la chaîne qui a conduit à l'accident".

Un mois après le drame, les enquêteurs n'ont "ni épave, ni enregistreurs de vol", a indiqué M. Bouillard, annonçant que les opérations de recherche des boîtes noires se poursuivront "jusqu'au 10 juillet".

"Vous savez que les balises (des boîtes) ont une durée réglementaire d'émission de 30 jours. On prolonge de dix jours supplémentaires pour essayer de les retrouver". Ensuite, une deuxième phase de recherches "démarrera après le 14 juillet avec d'autres moyens et suivant une autre méthode", a ajouté M. Bouillard, sans donner de détails sur cette nouvelle méthode.

Jusqu'ici, quelque 640 éléments de l'Airbus A330-200 Rio-Paris, ainsi que 51 corps, ont été retrouvés dans l'Atlantique. Tous les corps ont été transférés au Brésil, et tous les éléments repêchés "proviennent de l'ensemble des zones de l'avion, de la pointe, du radôme, jusqu'à la partie arrière".

Parmi ces débris figurent "des éléments de structure", tels que "la dérive, un morceau du plan horizontal arrière, un morceau de radôme, un capotage moteur", ainsi que "de nombreux aménagements cabine", tels que des "morceaux de siège". M. Bouillard a par ailleurs indiqué qu'on avait retrouvé des gilets de sauvetage non gonflés, un indice qui "montre visiblement que les passagers n'étaient pas préparés à un amerrissage". AP




Air France employees attend the funeral of Lucas Gagliano, a victim of the Air France Flight 447 that plunged into the ocean May 31, in Rio de Janeiro, Thursday, June 25, 2009. French military ships searching for the black boxes of Flight 447 have detected sounds in the Atlantic depths but they are not from the Air France plane's flight recorders, French officials said Tuesday.






Air France plane hit the sea belly first

AP – Navy officers hold wreaths that will throw into the sea in memory of the victims of the Air France Flight … By GREG KELLER and EMMA VANDORE, Associated Press Writers Greg Keller And Emma Vandore, Associated Press Writers – 1 hr 16 mins ago
LE BOURGET, France – An intact Air France Flight 447 slammed belly first into the Atlantic Ocean at a very high speed, a top French investigator said Thursday, adding that problems with the plane's speed sensors were not the direct cause of the crash.

Alain Bouillard, who is leading the investigation into the June 1 crash for the French accident agency BEA, says the speed sensors, called Pitot tubes, were "a factor but not the only one."

"It is an element but not the cause," Bouillard told a news conference in Le Bourget outside Paris. "Today we are very far from establishing the causes of the accident."

The Airbus A330-200 plane was carrying 228 people from Rio de Janeiro to Paris when it went down just after midnight in a remote area of the Atlantic, 930 miles (1,500 kilometers) off Brazil's mainland and far from radar coverage.

The BEA released its first preliminary findings on the crash Thursday, calling it one of history's most challenging plane crash investigations. Yet the probe, which has operated without access to the plane's flight data and voice recorders, appears to have unveiled little about what really caused the accident.

"Between the surface of the water and 35,000 feet, we don't know what happened," Bouillard admitted. "In the absence of the flight recorders, it is extremely difficult to draw conclusions."

Bouillard said the plane "was not destroyed in flight" and appeared to have hit "belly first," gathering speed as it dropped thousands of feet through the air.

He said investigators have found "neither traces of fire nor traces of explosives."

One of the automatic messages emitted by the Air France plane indicates it was receiving incorrect speed information from the external monitoring instruments, which could destabilize the plane's control systems. Experts have suggested those external instruments might have iced over.

The Pitots have not been "excluded form the chain that led to the accident," he said.

Kieran Daly, editor of Air Transport Intelligence, said although investigators seem to know very little about what happened due to "a horrendous lack of evidence" it was significant that the plane landed the right way up.

"It suggests they were in some kind of flight attitude," he said.

But he warned that "without finding the black boxes it's going to be phenomenally difficult, maybe impossible, to determine what happened."

Bouillard said life vests found among the wreckage were not inflated, suggesting that passengers were not prepared for a crash landing in the water. The pilots apparently also did not send any mayday calls.

He said there was "no information" suggesting a need to ground the world's fleet of more than 600 A330 planes as a result of the crash.

"As far as I'm concerned there's no problem flying these aircraft," he said.

A burst of automated messages emitted by the plane before it fell gave rescuers only a vague location to begin their search, which has failed to locate the plane's black boxes in the vast ocean expanse. The chances of finding the flight recorders are falling daily as the signals they emit fade. Without them, the full causes of the tragic accident may never be known.

The black boxes — which are in reality bright orange — are resting somewhere on an underwater mountain range filled with crevasses and rough, uneven terrain. Bouillard said the search for the plane's black boxes has been extended by 10 days through July 10.

The remote location, combined with the mystery of what happened to the plane — the pilots had either no time or no radio frequency to make a mayday call — makes the inquiry exceptionally challenging.

Bouillard said French investigators have yet to receive any information from Brazilian authorities about the results of the autopsies on the 51 bodies recovered from the site.

Families of the victims met with officials from BEA, Air France and the French transport ministry before the report was released Thursday. An association of families addressed a letter to the CEO of Air France, Pierre-Henri Gourgeon, demanding answers to several questions about the plane.

Investigators should have an easier time recovering debris and black boxes in the crash of a Yemeni Airbus 310 with 153 people on board that went down Tuesday just nine miles (14.5 kilometers) north of the Indian Ocean island-nation of Comoros.

Jhesu+Marie
Brantigny

1 comment:

tarasus said...

Tail of Airbus A330 made out of composite material like plastic. It is not durable as aluminum, simple crack may cause it to broke off in harsh turbulence. It happen once before in New York. Air France try to hide it now, they occupy all families of victims with their lawyers ( www.airfrance447truth.com ), families will get close to nothing, but main think no investigation will be made other then Air France ones. It's sad that other people now in great danger of flying those airplanes from Airbus. Airbus French based company, probably owned by same people as Air France. Euros rules, isn't they? How many more people have to die?