The black box from the Boeing jet that crashed and killed all 157 people on board will be sent overseas for analysis but no country has been chosen, an Ethiopian Airlines spokesman said Wednesday, as much of the world grounded or barred the plane model and grieving families arrived at the disaster site.
Asked whether the voice and data recorders from Flight ET 302, which crashed outside Addis Ababa killing all 157 people on board, would be taken to the United States, Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde GebreMariam said it had not been decided.
He added: “It could also be sent to a closer country in Europe in the interest of proximity and in the interest of speed.”
The pilots of the doomed Ethiopian Airlines flight told air traffic control they were having “flight control problems” before the crash, GebreMariam told CNN’s Richard Quest on Tuesday.
Pilots were aware of airworthiness directive issued after the Lion Air crash in October and had had additional training, he said.
Britain’s Air Accident Investigation Branch said on Wednesday it had not received any request to analyse the black boxes from Ethiopian Airlines flight 302, whose crash on Sunday prompted a number of countries to ground Boeing’s 737 MAX planes.
In Ethiopia, which lacks forensic expertise, Ethiopian Airlines said the black box voice and data recorders recovered on Monday would be sent overseas for analysis. That could be in Europe, the state company’s CEO told CNN.
“No approach has been made for the AAIB to handle the black boxes,” a spokesman for the British body, a leading contender to examine the boxes if they are analysed outside the United States. “A decision to request that would need to come from the Ethiopian authorities.”
– With inputs from Reuters and CNN
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