Suffering Families Abandoned Along with the Search

All the King’s horses and all the King’s men can’t find the black boxes of Air France Flight 447.

Is it true that they’ve given up the search? How is it with all of the technology we have at our disposal in 2010, so much of the plane is missing? The fuselage? The black boxes?

Nelson Marinho, president of the Association of the families of the victims, has been quoted saying that they (the searchers) don’t want to find the black boxes. It’s a valid question since the black boxes contain information that will surely implicate some of those who are paying for the search. 18.6% of Air France belongs to the government of France and the rest is owned by private shareholders. Do they really want to find the evidence that will hold Air France (and by virtue of that, the French government) responsible for charges like negligent maintenance, and convict the whole paradigm of fly-by-wire technology? Do they really want more evidence convicting Thales (a French company that manufactured the pitot tubes, also 27% owned by the government of France.) And I’m not sure of the exact numbers currently, but as of 2007, the government of France owns at least 15% of EADS, the consortium which owns Airbus.

The BEA site is curiously silent on the current status of the search, with the last report being in mid May.

In my opinion, it is unlikely that the black boxes will bring anything new to the table; where ever they are, they will most likely concur with the existing evidence pointing to pitot tube failure as a factor. But every shred of evidence is important, and currently, it appears that the fuselage impacted the ocean intact in a vertical descent. The recovered remains indicate compression injuries and look like there was no fire or explosion.

Regardless of what the evidence shows, phase three of the search for the black boxes has been entirely fruitless.

It is not as if finding the black boxes will bring back the dead. But at least the search should provide some answers.

228 people died. Families lost their loved ones. Not for three months, not for a year. The families will be suffering their losses for all eternity. It would be beyond reprehensible for Air France and Airbus to give up the search after less than a year. Don’t the families deserve answers?

Originally Posted by George Hatcher Thursday, May 30, 2010