Chinese investigators arrive in Taiwan for air crash probe

Taipei, Feb. 9 (CNA) Three Chinese officials arrived in Taiwan Monday to take part in an investigation into the crash of a TransAsia Airways (復興航空) aircraft Feb. 4, making it the first time the two sides of the Taiwan Strait will cooperate in this way.


The Chinese investigators will work with the Aviation Safety Council (ASC, 飛安會), which is leading the probe into the crash of flight GE235, with an initial report possibly filed within a month, said ASC Executive Director Thomas Wang (王興中).

The Chinese officials will examine the flight data and interview the Chinese survivors, which could help the council find out the cause of the tragedy.

The ATR72-600 plane crashed en route to the outlying island of Kinmen into Keelung River in Taipei almost immediately after it took off from Songshan Airport with 58 passengers and crew aboard.

The passengers included 31 tourists from the southwestern Chinese city of Xiamen. As of Monday evening, 26 of them had been confirmed dead, three were injured, and two remained unaccounted for, according to the Civil Aeronautics Administration (民航局).

Besides the Chinese experts, representatives from the French Land Transport Accident Investigation Bureau, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada, the French-Italian manufacturer of ATR planes and engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney Canada are also taking part in the investigation.