Missing Air France jet with 228 on board ‘hit by lightning’, airline says
June 1, 2009
(ChattahBox) — An Air France plane that took off from Rio de Janeiro Brazil bound for Paris that disappeared with 228 people on board today has almost certainly crashed with no survivors, according to airline and government officials. Air France Flight 447 dropped off the radar 200 minutes and less than 200 miles into the trip as the plane’s system sent an automatic error message reporting a “fault in an electronic circuit” after it passed through a patch of severe turbulence. Francois Brouse, Air France’s director of communications said:
“The most likely thing is that the plane was hit by lightning. The plane was in a stormy area with strong turbulence, which provoked problems.” Accident investigators talk always of a ‘sequence of catastrophic events’, and lightening on it’s own will not usually if ever take a plane down on it’s own. The accident took place in a turbulent area along the equator known as the Intertropical Convergence zone, where along with storms and lightening, mini-cyclonic phenomena has been known to quickly form.
Brazilian air force have mounted a search and rescue operation for the Airbus 330-200k in the waters around the archipelago of Fernando de Noronha.