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Dublin: 4°C Sunday 28 November 2021

Voice recorder of crashed Air France Flight 447 found

Three Irish women were among the 216 passengers and 12 crew members who died when the flight crashed off the coast of Brazil en route to Paris in 2009.

Image: AP Photo/BEA, Johann PESCHEL

FRENCH CIVIL AVIATION authorities say they have located a second flight data recorder from the Air France plane which crashed off the coast of Brazil in 2009, killing all 228 passengers and crew on board.

Air France KLM CEO Pierre-Henri Gourgeon said this morning that the cockpit voice recorder has been retrieved from the crash site.

Last week, investigators recovered part of a black box from the aircraft, but it was missing the data recorder. Then at the weekend, they announced they had found a flight data recorder.

Gourgeon said today that it is his “heartfelt hope that the data contained in these flight recorders may be used and provide answers to questions that relatives of the victims, Air France and the entire airline industry have been asking for nearly two years about why this tragic accident occurred”.

Experts say that these two flight recorders are essential if investigators are ever to establish what caused the crash, but the condition of the recorders is unclear. They have been sitting underwater at 3,900 metres below the ocean’s surface ever since the crash.

Investigators are continuing to search for the remains of the passengers who were on board Flight 447 as well as debris from the plane. Of the three young Irish women who died in the crash, only the remains of one have been found.

The three doctors, Jane Deasy, 27, of Rathgar, Dublin, Aisling Butler, 22, of Roscrea, Co Tipperary, and Eithne Walls, 28, from Belfast, were returning home from a holiday.

- Additional reporting from the AP

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