rescue efforts continue in China

The rescue efforts continue this Tuesday in the province of Guangxi, China, where this Monday a Boeing 737-800 of the China Eastern airline with 132 people on board. So far, no survivors or black boxes have been reported.

The plane was traveling between the cities of Kunming (southwest) and Canton (southeast) and took off at 1:15 p.m. local time (05:15 GMT). The event occurred after 2:00 p.m. (6:00 GMT)when the device lost contact with the ground and descended rapidly without further details having emerged.

The accident caused a forest fire in the area, difficult to access for rescue teams due to its steep orography and its remote location. For now, no official source has clarified whether foreigners were traveling on board.

The Chinese Army mobilizes 80 soldiers and 700 firefighters

The Chinese Army has mobilized in the early hours of this Tuesday to 80 soldiers of the region to collaborate in the rescue work, which joined more than 700 firefighters from the local province and another 500 dispatched for the neighboring province, Canton.

Also, the Health Commission of Guangxi has dispatched 36 ambulances and 80 medical workers to the area to assist possible survivors and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He has traveled to the scene to direct the operations.

The fire was extinguished on Monday afternoon and the rescue teams were able to approach the point of the event, where they continued their tasks during the night. “There are pieces of the plane’s wing, some between two and three meters. There is also rubble and debris, some of which is probably pieces of clothing“, Said a worker quoted by the Xinhua agency.

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The plane quickly plummeted

“The plane plummeted and seemed to be in one piece during the fall. A few seconds later, it crashed,” a resident of the area also told the agency, the Xinhua agency.

The last point of contact for the flight, according to data from the FlightRadar24 flight tracking portal, was about 25 kilometers southwest of Wuzhou, at an altitude of 3,225 feet (989 meters), at 2:22 p.m. local time (06:22 GMT). This would mean that in just three minutes the device descended almost 8,000 meters.

I heard a loud noise and quickly started a fire

Other witnesses have made reference to the sound of the explosion. “I heard a very loud noise and a fire quickly started in my tree plantation,” explained a local.

China Eastern Airlines loses 5.98% in Shanghai

The plane crash caused airline stock price declines flight operator, China Eastern Airlines. The company has lost 5.98% this Tuesday at 10:30 local time (2:30 GMT) on the Shanghai Stock Exchange and 4.36% on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, where it is also listed.

Hours after the incident, China Eastern ordered all 737-800 aircraft, the model of the accident plane, to remain on the ground until more information is available about what happened, according to local press.

The latest air tragedy reported by China’s aviation happened on August 24, 2010, when a Henan Airlines flight crashed in the city of Yichun, in the northeastern province of Heilongjiang, killing 44 people. In 2016 another five people lost their lives in an accident in Shanghai when a Joyair company seaplane fell, which was making its inaugural flight with ten passengers on board.

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The US appoints an investigator as a representative in the investigation

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) of the United States has appointed a senior safety investigator as the accredited representative of the country in the investigation of the accident.

Since the aircraft was manufactured in the USA, it can serve as representative under an international agreement. However, it is unknown at this time whether the NTSB will travel to the Guangxi region of southern China, where the plane crashed.

For its part, the Chinese Embassy in Washington made no comment about. In 2018, after a 2018 Boeing 737 MAX crash in Indonesia, the NTSB immediately dispatched investigators to participate in the exploration alongside the country’s government.

Boeing offers the support of its experts

Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun told his employees Tuesday that the planemaker has offered the full support of its experts for investigations of the accident.

“Trust that we will do our best to support our customer and inquiry of the accident during this difficult time, guided by our commitment to safety, transparency and integrity at every step,” Calhoun said in an email.

On the social network Twitter, the company has also wanted to affirm that it is working with the airline and that it is ready to “support” it. “Our thoughts are with the passengers and crew of China Eastern Airlines Flight MU 5735,” she said.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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