The airline industry today pledged to agree to standards by the end of the year for faster recovery of data to help investigators determine the cause of air accidents.
A French ship picked up a signal from one of the black boxes in the wreckage of EgyptAir flight 804 at depths of more than 9,800 feet on the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea. France’s transportation minister estimated it could take another eight days to recover the aircraft’s black boxes.
Gilberto Lopez Meyer, head of safety at the aviation industry’s trade body, Iata, promised the industry would make a “definitive and concrete decision” by the end of 2016 on a technology to ensure faster recovery of data.
The aviation industry is looking at options for easier data recovery, including streaming flight data. The International Civil Aviation Organization (IATA) called for flights experiencing distress to be tracked in real time in order to reduce black box recovery times. The new standard, however, would not go into effect until 2021.
Recovery of black box recorders is crucial in piecing together how and why planes crash. The devices typically consist of a cockpit voice recorder and a flight data recorder which provide information including cockpit noises, the flight’s airspeed, altitude and direction.