Disasters & Accidents

No survivors in China Eastern plane crash, aviation authorities confirm

Beijing, China, Mar 27 (EFE).- There are no survivors from the Boeing 737-800 that crashed last week in southern China, local authorities announced late Saturday night, according to state news outlet Xinhua.

“It is with great sadness that we are here to announce that the 123 passengers and nine crew members on board China Eastern Airlines Flight MU5735 on March 21 have all died,” Hu Zhenjiang, deputy head of the Civil Aviation Administration of China, told a news conference after six days of extensive searches.

From analysis of videos, data collected by air control radars and the distribution of debris and remains at the scene of the incident, it was possible to determine that there are no signs of life in the area, Hu said.

The identities of 120 victims have so far been confirmed through DNA testing, he added.

After studying 41 samples taken from the crash site, authorities have not found any remains of explosive components, reported Xinhua.

Efforts will now focus on searching for the remains of the victims and the plane to provide a basis for an investigation, Hu said.

“Our hearts are heavy,” a firefighter involved in the rescue told Xinhua. “We have been searching the place where the plane crashed and the surrounding hilly areas for days, expecting a miracle.”

The cause of the incident is still unknown and it is expected that the black boxes, one of which was found last Wednesday, will clarify the facts.

The plane departed Kunming at 1.15 pm local time (05:15 GMT) on Monday for Guangzhou, before plunging to the ground in Guangxi region at 2.38 pm.

Before crashing, the plane dropped almost 8,000 meters in just three minutes, according to FlightRadar24.

The crash ended a streak of almost 12 years without serious aviation accidents in the country, whose authorities announced an investigation that will last for two weeks to guarantee absolute safety in the sector. EFE


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