Search for Egypt crash boxes delayed

7th January 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Jan 7 (AFP) - France will send a more powerful submarine robot and a third ship to Egypt to help recover the flight recorders and debris from the jet that crashed there at the weekend, a military spokesman said Wednesday.

PARIS, Jan 7 (AFP) - France will send a more powerful submarine robot and a third ship to Egypt to help recover the flight recorders and debris from the jet that crashed there at the weekend, a military spokesman said Wednesday.

The Beautemps-Beaupre, currently located off the coast of Portugal, has been given orders to head for Egypt and should arrive at the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on or about January 14, Colonel Christian Baptiste told AFP.

The ship is equipped with underwater cameras and can guide the new submarine robot, which is expected to be able to operate at a depth of 600 to 800 meters (1,980 to 2,640 feet), where one of the black boxes is believed to be resting.

A Boeing 737 operated by charter company Flash Airlines crashed shortly after take-off from Sharm el-Sheikh on Saturday, killing all 148 aboard, most of them French tourists.

On Tuesday, Admiral Jacques Mazar told a press conference in the Egyptian resort town that the French navy, which is taking part in the Egyptian-led investigation, did not have the right equipment at the scene.

The black boxes have been located but at a depth which requires that a new robot be brought in to recover them, Mazar said.

The new submarine robot, to be provided by the Marseille-based company Comex, was expected to arrive at the crash scene in about a week, military sources in Paris said.

© AFP

                                Subject: France news

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