Mysterious Air France Crash May Soon be Solved

May 26, 2011

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. cockpit (n.) – a room at front part of the plane which contains the controls and the seats for the pilots
Example: Plane passengers are not allowed to enter the cockpit.

2. turbulence (n.) – a violent condition of the atmosphere
Example: Plane passengers must put their seatbelts locked during turbulence.
3. plummet (v.) – to drop suddenly and sharply into something
Example: The eagle plummeted from the sky to catch its prey.

4. fuselage (n.) – the main body of the plane on which the wings, engine and tail are attached
Example: Searchers recovered the fuselage a month after the accident.

5. departed (adj.) – dead or deceased
Example: We must pay respect to our departed loved ones.

Read the text below.

Two years after the mysterious crash of Air France 447, investigators announced last Wednesday that contents of the plane’s flight data and cockpit voice recorder were fully recovered. French investigators explained that the data could reveal why the plane crashed over the Atlantic in June 1, 2009.

Searchers recovered the recorders earlier this May after an intense search 12,700 feet under the Atlantic Ocean. Investigators said it will take several weeks to analyze the data which include a two-hour conversation in the cockpit.

On the day of the crash, the pilots lost contact with the air traffic controllers while passing over a part of the Atlantic where strong turbulences usually occur. For reasons still unknown today, the plane plummeted into the ocean, killing all 228 people aboard it. After the crash, rescuers were only able to find 50 bodies across the ocean.

In April this year, searchers found a part of the fuselage containing two more bodies. More bodies have been located but investigators said that they will only consider lifting the bodies out if the identification of the two bodies is still possible. Bringing up the bodies won’t be that easy, they explained. It will take at least three hours for each body to be lifted out using miles of cable.    

Some family members of the victims demand the recovery of the bodies, while others choose to leave their departed relatives undisturbed beneath the ocean.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         Why do you think some airlines push through flights even on a bad weather?
·         Would you cancel an important trip if the weather is not good? Why or why not?

Discussion B

·         How do you think can airline companies prevent plane crash?
·         What other things do you think can cause a plane crash?

May 26, 2011