Russian Plane Crash Investigation Moves to Hotels

Egypt is now investigating hotel workers, from maids to bellmen, to see if they helped ISIS' Wilayat Sinai bring down the Russian plane.

Turns out, the hotel security staff has been using fake metal detecting wands.

Sharm el-Sheikh now resembles a ghost town.

Apparently, what made all the governments 90% sure it was a bomb was some last second sound on the black box cockpit voice recorder. The turnaround in opinion was immediate. No one has described the sound, calling it an "unknown sound", with many assuming it was of an explosion. I'm wondering if the sound wasn't something else -- like someone shouting "Allahu Akbar", which only takes a second to say.

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  • Display: Sort:
    I'm Not Convinced, Yet (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by RickyJim on Tue Nov 10, 2015 at 05:44:34 PM EST
    What kind of sound would an exploding fuel tank, in an event caused by an electrical short circuit, make?  How does that differ from the sound heard on the Metrojet 9628?  All explosions are not caused by bombs.  Think TWA Flight 800.

    And as I noted in earlier threads, ... (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 10, 2015 at 10:15:34 PM EST
    ... the flight deck crew of United 811 initially thought a bomb in the cargo hold caused the huge breach in the port side of their B-747 aircraft at 22,000 feet and 20 minutes out of Honolulu. It was later determined that a cargo door had failed to seal properly and blew out at high altitude, causing an explosive depressurization of the cabin to occur, which to most everyone on board sounded like a bomb.

    At this point, no forensic evidence ... (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Nov 10, 2015 at 10:09:31 PM EST
    ... has been publicly disclosed by crash site investigators to support the repeated conjecture offered by the U.S. and British intelligence communities that a bomb brought down the Metrojet A-321 airliner ten days ago.

    Please let me know if and when they actually find something to that effect. Because right now, until that occurs, I'm now leaning toward the culprit being some sort of structural failure to the airframe of that aging 18-year-old aircraft, which somehow breached its fuselage and caused an explosive decompression to occur at high altitude.


    It could be mechanical sabotage (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by Aspidistra on Wed Nov 11, 2015 at 11:30:09 AM EST
    There is a pilots' forum called PPRuNe and they always discuss plane crashes.  This time around, these guys are obsessed with the horizontal stabilizer that snapped off the tail and was found without any scorch marks miles away from the rest of the wreckage.  According to the pilots, that is structurally speaking one of the strongest parts of the airframe and it should not have come off even in an explosion.  There are people speculating that it might have been mechanical sabotage rather than a bomb - apparently loosening the jackscrew would take down a plane at some point during its flight.  The plane was parked overnight so someone could have had access to it. The other possibility is that the malefactors used a new kind of technology for the bomb, or that the crash was strictly an accident related to the previous damage and repairs to the plane.

    Pprune is the go to (none / 0) (#6)
    by smott on Wed Nov 11, 2015 at 05:18:51 PM EST
    For these things. International news sources go to this site for details. The Mods will remove certain info that may help terrorists for example details on bomb placements, or the security surrounding the cockpit door codes from the Germanwings crash. Don't bother with anything else but PPrune.
    Also - Adrasz is a very knowledgable poster. There is a debate ongoing re possible failure of the horizontal stabilizer mechanism within the tail, and Adrasz has solid info there: the HS failing could not cause the tail to break. It's not strong enough. If the hinges failed and the HS flipped up/down into the wind stream, they would merely snap off.
    But the tail failing first, sagging down and thereby presenting the HS into the stream would certainly cause them to snap off.
    It's an interesting discussion, but it's pretty clear the tail failed downwards and was the start of the breakup.

    Whether that was by some nefarious and as yet unconfirmed bomb, or whether it was a simple explosive decompression in the lower rear by the tail skid, we have yet to confirm.

    And again, it's inconceivable at this late date that they don't know if it was or was not a bomb.

    They are withholding info.

    Who benefits ?


    The commentary (none / 0) (#2)
    by christinep on Tue Nov 10, 2015 at 06:49:10 PM EST
    from the national news media experts appears to be that the sound of a bomb explosion is quite unique and almost immediately identifiable as a bomb.  Perhaps that may be the reason for the quick "determination" after the audio became available.