Vietnam Coast Guard homes in on black box of missing CASA plane

By Doan Loan, Giang Chinh   June 22, 2016 | 03:53 pm GMT+7
Vietnam Coast Guard homes in on black box of missing CASA plane
Marine police force participates in the search for sea patrol plane CASA 212 this morning. Photo by VnExpress

A Vietnam Coast Guard commander this morning said search and rescue teams looking for the missing CASA-212-40 patrol plane which went missing on June 14 are determined to recover the aircraft’s black box today.

The Coast Guard told VnExpress they have already zoned in on the location where the CASA crashed, which is near the delimitation line in the Gulf of Tonkin. At of 10:30 a.m. today, they were “searching for the plane but yet to find the black box.”

“We have mobilized a large number of forces today and we are using the most advanced equipment to salvage the black box,” said Major General Nguyen Quang Dam, commander of the Coast Guard. The aircraft crashed in waters 60 meters deep, and clear weather should help the search operation, Dam added. Robots and divers have also been deployed.

According to Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Nhat, Airbus - the maker of the sea patrol plane - will cooperate with Vietnam to identify the reasons behind the incident. The company has asked for data from the black box and CASA’s cockpit recordings to be transfered to Airbus’s office in Madrid (Spain) so they can reconstruct the accident for investigation.

Technical specialist tuner device installed black boxes .

Technical specialists install a black box detector. Photo by VnExpress.

Over the last few days, units under the Ministry of Transport have been working with other forces under the leadership of the National Steering Committee for Search and Rescue to find the nine missing people who were on board the sea patrol plane and the black box from the Su-30 fighter jet it was looking for.

A team from the Coordination Center for Aviation Search and Rescue equipped with two sets of new generation black box detectors has joined the search for the fighter jet off the coast of the central province of Nghe An.

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The new generation black box detector, tagged STI - 350. Photo by VnExpress.

On June 14, the Su-30MK2 Vietnamese fighter jet crashed offshore the central province of Nghe An. The jet had two pilots on board, one of whom, Major Nguyen Huu Cuong, was rescued, but the other, Lieutenant Colonel Tran Quang Khai, 43, was found dead at sea and has been brought ashore. A CASA-212-40 with nine people on board went missing on June 16 while searching for the Su-30MK2.

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