Investigators have found bodies of victims of the ill-fated Air France passenger plane that crashed into the Atlantic Ocean more than two years ago, according to French Ecology and Transportation Minister Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet in a news conference Monday.
The French minister said investigators were conducting continuing search of the aircraft wreckage in a bid to find important pieces of evidence including the flight data recorders or black box which have yet to be recovered, when they discovered bodies in the wreckage.
Authorities have considered the latest discovery of the wreckage and the bodies believed to be that of the passengers vital to the continuing investigation which had been carried out in the hope finding conclusive answers into what caused the plane to drop off the sky.
On June 1, 2009, Air France Airbus A330-200 carrying 228 people including the flight crew suddenly disappeared while flying from Rio de Janeiro enroute to Paris. The plane was later discovered to have crashed into the Atlantic Ocean, killing all those aboard.
Previous searches have so far recovered only 50 bodies, leaving 178 crash victims still unaccounted for. But investigators could not determine how many bodies remain in the wreckage.
“It’s still a jigsaw puzzle and we don’t know where the recorders might be,” stressed Alain Bouillard, who is leading the recovery operation. He added that the debris is dispersed over “quite a compact area.”
Jean-Paul Troadec, head of the French air accident investigation agency, the Bureau d’Enquêtes et d’Analyses (BEA), said the once brought to the surface, pieces of plane’s wreckage will be immediately sent to France for study.
“We want to know what happened in this accident, most particularly so it never happens again,” Troadec said.