The Wall Street Journal reports today that information in a “black box” recovered after a Boeing 737-800 crashed in China, killing 132 people, suggests that someone in the cabin may have caused the crash.
The newspaper advances that the data collected from the “black box”, citing evidence related to a preliminary assessment carried out by US officials, shows that a person executed orders that led to the downfall of China Eastern’s device. “The plane did what someone in the cockpit said,” one of the Wall Street Journal sources said, adding that Chinese officials had not yet warned of any mechanical or aircraft control problems on board.
According to the daily quoted by the French news agency AFP, US officials are diverting their attention to the actions of a pilot, who may have entered the cockpit.
The plane, which was flying between the cities of Kunming (southwest) and Guangzhou (southeast), crashed in the Guangxi region on March 21 at 2:38 pm local time (7:38 am in Lisbon), killing all the people. Board (123 passengers and nine crew). According to the flight surveillance portal FlightRadar24, the plane landed vertically and descended almost 8,000 meters within three minutes.
China’s civil aviation administration, which is officially in charge of the investigation, said in a statement in late April that it had prepared an initial report without providing details of what caused the crash.
Representatives from the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Safety provide technical assistance in accordance with international aviation rules.
The French news agency AFP was contacted today and the US agency said it would not comment on another official-led investigation. Boeing also declined to comment, arguing that only the authority responsible for the current investigation could report its progress.
At the end of April, China’s Civil Aviation Administration said in a statement that the qualifications of the aircraft’s personnel and maintenance personnel were “in order” as well as certification of the aircraft’s flight eligibility.
China Eastern had previously said the pilot and two co-pilots were not in doubt and Chinese authorities imposed strict controls on information surrounding the disaster.