BEIJING – Excavators probed into a disaster site on Saturday (Mar 26) in search of wreckage, bodies, and the second black box from a China Eastern Airlines Boeing 737-800 that crashed into a hillside in southern China this week, killing all 132 people on board.
They discovered an emergency location transmitter from the plane near where the second black box – the flight data recorder – was attached, said Zhu Tao, head of the Civil Aviation Administration of China’s Aviation Safety Office, telling reporters on Saturday.
The data module is also being sought by the team from the flight data recorder itself.
However, the search is being hampered by muddy terrain in the wet region. Pumps were employed to remove the water, and one excavator stopped operating after becoming partially trapped, according to CCTV.
Workers in knee-high rubber boots sifted through the dirt slopes in a 20-meter-deep trench created by the plane using shovels and other hand equipment. Hundreds of rectangular, mud-stained plastic buckets were used to gather debris and other stuff.
There were no survivors, and the cause of the disaster remained unknown. An air traffic controller attempted to contact the pilots numerous times after witnessing the plane’s altitude drop significantly, but received no response, according to officials.
The cockpit voice recorder was discovered on Wednesday, but the flight data recorder has yet to be discovered.