China Eastern flight MU5735, a B737-800, crashed in the Guangxi highlands with no survivors, according to official comments provided by Boeing, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
According to FlightRadar24, MU5735, registration B-1791, was traveling from Kunming to Guangzhou on March 21, 2022, when it was lost at 06:22 UTC, just over an hour after taking off.
The B737-800 plane, which had 132 passengers on board, had crashed in the Guangxi highlands of southern China, it was subsequently revealed. No survivors have been located at the Guangxi site, according to state media.
After cruising at 29,100 feet, the aircraft entered a sharp drop, according to FlightRadar24 data. The plane briefly came to a halt before plunging again. According to the flight tracking service, its final drop rate was 31,000 feet per minute.
Our thoughts are with the passengers and crew of China Eastern Airlines Flight MU 5735. We are working with our airline customer and are ready to support them.
— The Boeing Company (@Boeing) March 21, 2022
The plane’s precipitous drop of about 8000 meters in less than two minutes has prompted one aircraft investigator to propose that foul play should be at the forefront of investigators’ minds as they try to figure out what went wrong with the flight.
In a statement released on March 21, 2022, Boeing said: “Our thoughts are with the passengers and crew of China Eastern Airlines Flight MU 5735. We are working with our airline customers and are ready to support them. Boeing is in contact with the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board and our technical experts are prepared to assist with the investigation led by the Civil Aviation Administration of China.”
The B737 aircraft involved in the accident was delivered to China Eastern Airlines (CIAH) (CEA) in June 2015, according to FlightRadar24.
The NTSB has appointed a senior air safety investigator as a U.S. accredited representative to the investigation of the March 21, 2022, crash of a China Eastern Airlines Boeing 737-800 near Wuzhou, China.
— NTSB_Newsroom (@NTSB_Newsroom) March 21, 2022
The Boeing-made aircraft fleet of China Eastern Airlines (CIAH) (CEA) consists of 289 Boeing 737 family aircraft, 20 Boeing 777s, and 10 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. A total of seven COMAC ARJ21 regional planes are also part of the group’s fleet.
Following the disaster, Boeing stock dropped, and by the end of the day on March 21, 2022, it was down 3.6 percent on Wall Street.
The NTSB has also issued an official statement via Twitter, stating that the inquiry is being led by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC). The board also announced that a senior air safety investigator had been assigned to the inquiry of flight MU5735 as a U.S. accredited representative.
The FAA is aware of reports that a China Eastern Airlines Boeing 737-800 plane crashed this morning in China. The agency is ready to assist in investigation efforts if asked.
— The FAA ✈️ (@FAANews) March 21, 2022
Meanwhile, the FAA expressed its support, stating that if requested, the agency is ready to assist in the investigation of flight MU5735.