Mangalore AI plane crash: Black box found

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After an agonising wait, the ‘black box’ (cockpit Data Recorder) of the Air India Express plane that crashed on Saturday has finally been recovered. This came as a sigh of relief for teams from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) and local police, who spent the last three days trying to recover the equipment.

The recovery of the black box is expected to act as a vital link in re-constructing the events leading to the crash. Earlier, the teams had recovered the cockpit voice recorder from the debris. Results of the DNA tests conducted on 22 victims whose bodies were charred beyond recognition is awaited.

The ill-fated Air India Express flight killed 158 people, including 19 children and four infants. It had taken off from Dubai and was due to land in Mangalore on Saturday morning. The Boeing 737-800, which was inducted on January 15, 2008 and piloted by British national of Serbian origin Zlatko Glusica, had 160 passengers and six crew members on board the budget carrier, flight IX-812.

So far, experts have felt the accident must have been caused by a pilot error. With the recovery of the black box, the exact cause of the accident is expected to be known. It is believed that while landing the plane, the pilot overshot the touchdown point by over 2,000 feet. Despite his efforts, the plane could not come to a standstill and went down into a valley that is forested and burst into flames.

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