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Black box of plane that crashed and killed female fighter pilot found

By Guo Kai | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2016-11-14 14:41

Black box of plane that crashed and killed female fighter pilot found

Female Chinese fighter jet pilot Yu Xu of the Bayi Aerobatic Team of the Peoples Liberation Army's Air Force is pictured during the 11th China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition, also known as Airshow China 2016, in Zhuhai city, South China´s Guangdong province, Nov 1, 2016. [Photo/IC]


The engine and the flight data recorder, or black box, of the two-seater fighter jet J-10 that crashed and left one of the country's first female fighter pilots Yu Xu dead, have been recovered at the accident site in Yutian county, North China's Hebei province, an official said.

Rescuers found the engine and black box Saturday evening and handed them over to authorities, said the official in charge of the military department of Chenjiapu township in Yutian.

The authorities are investigating the cause, the official added, and the search work for the jet's remains ended Sunday afternoon.

Two pilots from the Bayi Aerobatic Team of People's Liberation Army's Air Force were conducting a routine flight training Saturday morning in Tianjin before they were forced to eject from the jet.

Two J-10 jets from the aerobatic team were training when the planes hit each other, according to media reports.

Witnesses said the impact left a 10-meter diameter and 3-meter deep pit on the farmland at Dayangpu village of Chenjiapu. The plane was flying from west to east before the crash. Another plane circled twice above the site and left.

The male pilot parachuted to safety. But Yu Xu, the country's first female J-10 pilot, hit the wing of another J-10 and died. She was at the back seat during the training.

A medical worker at the Yutian county hospital said the male pilot was sent to hospital around 11 am on Saturday, and was discharged soon as he had minor injuries. He has been identified as 35 years old Li.

Born in 1986, Yu was from Chongzhou city in Southwest China's Sichuan province. She joined the military in 2005 as a student at the PLA Air Force Aviation University, and first flew J-10 in July 2012.

Fans gave her the nickname Golden Peafowl because the beautiful and versatile woman was also better at the peafowl dance. A photo showed that she performed the dance at a school party after joining in the university.

Yu has joined the performance of the Bayi Aerobatic Team during the 11th China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition, also known as Airshow China 2016, in Zhuhai city, South China's Guangdong province earlier this month.

Yu did an interview with China National Radio in Zhuhai, which provided the last tape recordings of her.

She said it was a happy thing to be a pilot and she has never regretted her decision. She also dreamed to become an astronaut. "I will receive hard training to realize my dream," she said.

Yu's parents arrived in Tianjin Saturday evening after the army informed them of the news. They choked with tears and stayed up at Yu's dormitory room for the whole night.

The parents ate nothing before their friend Du Wenbiao, a military officer, finally persuaded them to have something Sunday evening.

Chongzhou city officials have also arrived in Tianjin Sunday afternoon to help the parents to deal with the aftermath.

Millions of people read the news released by the Air Force at Sina Weibo, a Twitter-like service in China, and paid their respect. Many have considered Yu as a model in pursuing their dreams.

Black box of plane that crashed and killed female fighter pilot found

Female Chinese fighter jet pilot Yu Xu (right) of the Bayi Aerobatic Team of the Peoples Liberation Army's Air Force is pictured during the 11th China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition, also known as Airshow China 2016, in Zhuhai city, South China´s Guangdong province, Nov 2, 2016. [Photo/IC]


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