EgyptAir Flight MS804 voice recorder damage may limit information

Published June 17th, 2016 - 11:24 GMT
An Egyptian military spokesperson posted a picture on Facebook of wreckage from an undisclosed location. (AFP/Egyptian military)
An Egyptian military spokesperson posted a picture on Facebook of wreckage from an undisclosed location. (AFP/Egyptian military)

Although searchers have located one of the "black boxes" from EgyptAir Flight MS804, it might not provide the answers investigators hope it will.

Egyptian authorities said Thursday the cockpit voice recorder -- a tape recording of everything that's said among the crew on the flight deck -- is damaged.

"The cockpit voice recorder was retrieved in several stages, as it was damaged, but the vessel equipment managed to pick up the memory unit; which is considered as the most important part," the Egyptian Ministry of Civil Aviation said in a statementThursday.

Using various laboratory methods, investigators might still be able to salvage the tape recording -- which can provide vital clues about what happened to the flight.

The CVR was located after search teams found the plane's wreckage in the Mediterranean Sea on Wednesday. The other "black box," though, the flight data recorder, is still missing.

The search for the wreckage is being conducted by Deep Ocean Search.

A ship equipped with an underwater robot has been searching the area north of Egypt's coast for weeks attempting to pinpoint the 12-year-old Airbus.

Officials believe Flight MS804 crashed in the Mediterranean nearly a month ago en route from Paris to Cairo, with 66 people on board. The Airbus A320 jetliner dropped from radar screens as it traveled from Greek to Egyptian airspace.

All passengers and flight crew are presumed dead.

Authorities are considering the possibility that the aircraft was brought down by an "act of terrorism", but the official cause of the incident has not yet been determined.

By Andrew V. Pestano and Doug G. Ware


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