Disasters & Accidents

Cockpit voice recorder from Sriwijaya Air crash found in Java Sea

Jakarta, Mar 31 (efe-epa).- Indonesian search teams have found the cockpit voice recorder (CVR) from the Sriwijaya Air passenger jet that crashed into the Java Sea shortly after takeoff from Jakarta on Jan. 9, killing all 62 people on board.

The 26-year-old Boeing 737 had been headed to Pontianak on the island of Borneo when it plunged into the sea. Searchers found the other Black Box component, the flight data recorder (FDR), three days later.

The CVR was found on Tuesday night 1 meter under the muddy seabed, National Transportation Safety Committee head Soerjanto Tjahjono said Wednesday in a press conference.

The data-reading process is expected to take from three days to one week, before a transcript can be made and matched with the FDR.

The CVR is key to determining what conversations were had and which actions were taken in the cockpit before the plane crashed.

On Feb. 10, Indonesian authorities said in a preliminary report that a mechanical failure in an engine throttle lever could have caused Flight 182 to plunge into the sea from a height of 10,900 feet (3,300 meters).

A few days before the accident and on two occasions, pilots reported a malfunction of the autothrottle system, which was repaired by technicians.

Authorities had been trying to locate the CVR, especially as they do not know why the pilots could not regain control of the aircraft. The autothrottle system can be turned off and controlled manually.

Indonesia, with more than 17,000 islands, has witnessed 104 civil air accidents with 2,301 fatalities since 1945, according to data from the Aviation Safety Network.

The worst accident in the history of Indonesian aviation occurred in September 1997, when an Airbus of the flag carrier Garuda crashed near Medan on the island of Sumatra, killing all 234 people on board. EFE-EPA


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