French President Confirms Missing Plane Has Crashed
EgyptAir flight 804 carrying 66 people went missing coming from Paris to Cairo, disappearing over the Aeagen Sea.
It’s now been confirmed by French President François Hollande has confirmed that the plane has crashed and Paris prosecutors have opened an investigation.
The flight, carrying 56 passengers and 10 crew members, was lost after a rapid drop. According to Greece’s defense minister, Panos Jammenos, “The plane carried out a 90-degree turn to the left and a 360-degree turn to the right, falling from 37,000 to 15,000 feet and the signal was lost at around 10,000 feet.”
Hollande also added, “The information that we have been able to gather—the prime minister, the members of the government, and of course the Egyptian authorities—unfortunately confirm for us that this plane crashed at sea and has been lost.”
The French President made this announcement after speaking with Egyptian president, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, over the phone. A combination of French, Egyptian, and Greek rescue workers will continue to search for any debris which may aide investigators in discovering the reason for the crash. At the moment, terrorism is not out the realm of possibilities, however President Hollande was quick to quell fears.
“When we have the truth, we must draw all the conclusions, whether it is an accident or another hypothesis, which everybody has in mind, the terrorist hypothesis,” Hollande said.
A definitive timeline of the plane’s movements prior to the crash has been released as well.
02:24: EgyptAir flight 804 from Paris to Cairo enters Greek airspace, air traffic controller permissions it for the remainder of its course.
02:48: The flight is transferred to the next air traffic control sector and is cleared for exit from Greek airspace. “The pilot was in good spirits and thanked the controller in Greek.”
03:27: Athens air traffic control tries to contact the aircraft to convey information on the switch of communications and control from Athens to Cairo air traffic. In spite of repeated calls, the aircraft does not respond, whereupon the air traffic controller calls the distress frequency, without a response from the aircraft.
03:29: It is above the exit point (from Greek airspace).
03:39:40: The aircraft signal is lost, approximately 7 nautical miles south/southeast of the KUMBI point, within Cairo FIR.
Immediately the assistance of radars of the Hellenic Air Force is requested to detect the target, without result.
03:45: The processes of search and rescue are initiated, simultaneously informing the Flight Information Region of Cairo.
The captain of a merchant ship, said to be in the area where the plane may have crashed, claims to have seen a flame in the sky during the time of the crash.