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tv   Early Start With John Berman and Christine Romans  CNN  May 19, 2016 2:00am-3:01am PDT

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cnn tracking the latest from around the world. welcome back to "early start." i'm christine romans. >> i'm boris sanchez. it is 5:00 a.m. on the east coast. 11:00 a.m. in egypt. we are following breaking news. an egyptian passenger jet disappeared over the mediterranean. the egyptair flight 804 dropped from radar about 175 miles off the coast of egypt. there was a distress signal from the general vicinity of the plane. in the last hour, egypt's president called a meeting of the national security council. for the latest, let's bring in ian lee at cairo international airport. ian, we understand you spoken to family members at the command center set up there. what are they telling you? >> reporter: that's right. if you can see behind me, we had family members, dozens coming in behind me, coming to get the
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latest to find out what happened to their family members and loved ones. what they're telling us right now is that egyptian officials are very uncertain about how the plane went down, but what they are telling them it did in fact hit the water. it crashed into the mediterranean. this is different from the official line we are getting from various government officials saying they are not saying this plane has crashed yet although it is eight and a half hours after it disappeared from radar. right now, the main focus is on the strip of water 175 miles north of the egyptian coastline. that's where we have the egyptian military searching the area. the navy is out there. the coast guard is out there.
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they are cooperating with the greeks to find what is left of the plane. so hope of a possible survivor. right now, this very much is a search and rescue operation and the families behind me waiting to hear the latest updates. they are expressing frustration. rightfully so. >> ian, eight hours after the flight disappeared now. the french foreign ministry has shared condolences over what the egyptians have stated is a fallen airliner. we have not ruled out any kind of cause at all. >> reporter: that is right. it is still open to what could possibly bring down this plane. what we know is the record of this aircraft and the pilots.
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egyptair has released this is a plane they say that received regular maintenance. there were no problems that were detected on this plane. the pilot didn't tell them of any issues that he had come across. the other issue is the pilots. these are very experienced men. they have over, the pilot had over 5,000 hours of experience on the plane. over 2,000 hours on this particular airbus a-320. the copilot with thousands of hours of experience. they are trying to look at all of the variables here. as far as egyptair is telling us, they don't believe there is anything technical or anything to do with the pilots. they are not ruling anything out at this moment. >> ian lee reporting from cairo where the families of those on
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board ms-804 is trying to find more information. >> the flight left charles de gaulle airport after 11:00 p.m. local time. egyptair says there were 15 french nationals on the plane. the plane was made in france by airbus. france is cooperating with egypt and the french government held an emergency crisis meeting to just the disappearance of the flight. for more on this, senior correspondent jim bittermann is in the paris bureau. jim, the news that egypt and france have exchanged condolences from the fallen aircraft. not only this plane disappeared, but there could be fatalities here. >> reporter: exactly. in fact, the foreign minister said this morning that after that crisis meeting that the first priority for the french government are the families of the victims.
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assuming there are victims and no one survived. assuming. as well as egyptian families and other families in paris. they set up a crisis center at the airport. some families are trickling in. they would have said good-bye to the families at 11:00 at night. they are returning here for medical and psychological assistance if necessary and get the latest news. a crisis center set up at the foreign ministry. airbus is sending their condolences. this is a hot seller. 6,000 in service around the world. 2 million people fly on airbus a-320s each day. it is a reliable aircraft. they are looking at all issues. they are looking at records with anybody who had contact with the
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air flight and the baggage handlers and anybody who loaded the food service carts. all that is being investigated now. until they find the wreckage, it gives them a better indication of the cause. they are taking every step to see what would have a brought the plane down. >> thank you, jim. let's get more now from cnn anchor and aviation expert richard quest live in the beijing bureau. you have been hearing this information coming in. what are you hearing? what questions are you asking your sources this morning? >> reporter: i think you have to start with when this incident took place. 37,000 feet, which is the safest part of the flight. no call of mayday.
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if you look on flight radar 24, you see the plane's profile just coming to a stop. the flight is at 36,900 feet. give or take. the speed increases slightly. there's nothing abnormal about the profile. no warnings. then just suddenly nothing. not only that, we also don't even see the descent. quite often with radar flight 24 and other monitoring tools, you will see the plane descend. you will see the rate of descent that will be up to 10,000 feet a minute or more. what this is telling me is obviously whatever happened was sudden, dramatic, instant. probably led to complete destruction and complete power loss. the plane simply stopped communicating. >> richard, i wanted to ask
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about the track record of egyptair. do they have the capacity to move forward with an investigation like this? >> reporter: oh, yeah. first of all, don't forget the egyptian authorities did the investigation into metrojet. the egyptian authorities having said for a long time that there was no bomb or no nefarious activity. finally came out in the report saying yes. i have confidence in the egyptian authorities to do a good job in getting to the grips of what happened. once they got the flight recorders. as for the egyptair itself, a stalwart and reliable for years. a member of star alliance. it's had its economic woes for sure and it tried to grow the network and tried to create more connections over cairo. the core point is it is safe.
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two or three incidents in the last 30 years. the most famous was the 767 out of new york to cairo which is widely accepted in the case of pilot suicide. other than that, nothing in the profile of flights over the last 30 to 40 years that would give one an eyebrow raised. it is a well run experienced airline. the pilots know what they are doing. maintenance is good. so far, no reason to doubt. >> we know there were three security personnel part of the crew on the flight. richard quest, thank you so much for your expertise this morning. >> we will continue to follow breaking news right now. egypt air flight from paris to cairo missing with 66 people on board. authorities in paris and cairo lamenting the fallen aircraft. we are breaking down the latest next. (avo) i've always been a dog person.
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it's been more than eight hours since egyptair flight 804 disappeared from radar. the airbus a-320 was travels from paris to cairo when it vanished from the radar with 66 people on board. it disappeared from air space over the mediterranean. the egyptian military is searching for the jetliner right now. they detected a distress signal from the vicinity from where the plane may have gone down. >> joining us to help put this into context, aviation expert julian gray.
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joining us from england. at 37,000 feet, the safest part of the flight in calm weather and clear skies. >> as you say, calm weather, clear skies and a very mild sea. it is looking at though it could be a catastrophic failure. this is pure speculation. we have to wait for the officials to tell us what happened. there are messages that a distress signal from the vicinity of the aircraft have been received. this could well be the location responder from the black box. when it hits water, it automatically pings off a sound. if the aircraft has hit water and has sunk, obviously, as it is sinking, the beacon would go off and it would get fainter and fainter. that might be the origin of the distress call.
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>> that might be the origin of the distress call. we have to get more information. including eyewitness information from the area. we know, sir, that there's a lot of marine traffic there. boat traffic. we know search and rescue are there now. we know there is a lot of migrant traffic. refugee traffic in the vicinity. that is the next step to see if there is eyewitness to help locate where the flight is. >> already, again, there are conflicting reports. there is a message that the captain did see something and he has reported occurrence back to the authorities. you have to remember the military are already in the area. it is heavily policed, shall we say. there are lots of communication channels open. they probably know what has happened to this plane, but they are not telling us yet. i understand there are helicopters on the way.
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there is an overhead awak. a radar aircraft. helicopters and ships. a frigate on the way. they are all looking for a debris field it has come down. they are saying it possibly has come down, but nobody is confirming it. it is still search and rescue rather than recovery. >> we know there are at least three security personnel on board the flight. is that typical? do you know if the security officials by chance are armed? >> i don't know. it is quite usual these days to have security on board aircraft. we do live in a dangerous world. they take addition security precautions. they try not to tell us what they're doing. the point is you have to remember that we all have to be very careful now and take extra
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care with our luggage and keep it with us and try to make sure we don't actually give anybody to do us harm any opportunity. >> thank you, julian bray from peterborough, england. we are tracking this information on the missing egyptair flight vanished on the way from paris to cairo. what we know about the weather in the area. all that next. re real? with discover card, you can talk to a real person in the u.s., like me, anytime. wow. this is a recording. really? no, i'm kidding. 100% u.s.-based customer service. here to help, not to sell. not to be focusingo finaon my moderatepe. to severe chronic plaque psoriasis. so i made a decision to talk to my dermatologist about humira. humira works inside my body to target and help block a specific source of inflammation that contributes to my symptoms.
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welcome back. it has been more than eight hours since egyptair flight 804 disappeared. the airbus a-320 en route from
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paris to cairo when it fell off radar. there were 66 people on board the flight. the french and egyptian authorities exchanging condolences over what they call the fall of the aircraft. egyptian military planes and boats are searching for the plane. they claim there is a distress signal over the vicinity where the plane may have gone down. >> let's bring in meteorologist derek van dam to see if weather played a role in the downing the plane. >> that is correct, boris and christine. euro confirming there were no weather-related issues with the disappearance of the egyptair flight. i myself as a meteorologist checked all the weather variables. thunderstorms, turbulence were not present at the last moments
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of contact with the particular aircraft. we need to focus on the attention of the high likelihood of search and recovery effort. we look to water temperatures over the eastern mediterranean. this is important. if there are survivors of the potential crash, 65 to 72 degrees. think about the body temperature of 96 degrees. if you are submerged in water below that temperature, that will impact your core body temperature. that could have potential health hazards. dependent if you are a healthy and fit individual or elderly or young adult. you have survival time of two hours up to 40 hours. the weather going forward is a factor for the search and recovery efforts. we have a system across the eastern mediterranean. that will not take place until the friday time frame. that is when winds pick up and potentially push around the open
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waves. that could be an impact detrimental for the search and recovery efforts. one thing i want to show you. we have been talking about the abrupt end to the communication. we highlighted the flight path. we put a three dimensional perspective with google earth. i want you to see how it comes to an abrupt end. that tells me there were a few options. obviously potentially a loss of power. some sort of catastrophic failure or perhaps maybe somebody turned off the communication devices. this picture, i believe, leaves a lot of open-ended questions here. >> many potential scenarios for investigators to look at. derek, thank you. that egyptair flight missing with 66 people on board. this is a desperate search and rescue right now. live team coverage with the latest information next.
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this is cnn breaking news. >> breaking news this morning. an egyptair flight from paris to cairo vanishes. a desperate search for the plane and 66 people on board. cnn satisis tracking latest. welcome back to "early start." i'm boris sanchez. >> i'm christine romans. it is 5:30 in the east. we welcome our viewers from around the world. it has been more than eight hours since egyptair flight 804 dropped from radar overnight en route from paris to cairo. hours ago, egyptair reported a distress signaling from the general vicinity from the plane some time after the crash. within the last hour, the french and egyptian officials exchanged condolences over what they call
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the fall of the aircraft. let's bring in cnn's ian lee at cairo international airport. we can assume this plane is somewhere in the mediterranean sea, ian? >> reporter: i think definitely at this point. it is well over eight hours since the plane disappeared from radar and no one has been able to pick it up since. i think you can make that assumption safely. the plane is somewhere in the mediterranean. we are hearing from the greek embassy in the u.k. tweeting this out that greece is participating in the rescue operation under way in the mediterranean region. 130 nautical miles southeast of the island of carpathos. the greek armed forces deployed
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a c-130 aircraft. and another c-130 is heading to the area as well as a frigate. helicopters are also on the scene. they seem to know the exact location, apparently, of where the plane is located. 130 nautical miles from the shore. talking to the family members here, they are saying officials are telling them that this plane has hit the water. we do know that there is a massive search operation under way by egyptian authorities. you have the egyptian air force ands egyptian navy and coast guard searching the area for any evidence of the wreckage or possibly survivors. against all odds.
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really still very much early in the investigation. right now, the main priority is finding out where the plane is and helping anyone who survived if there are survivors. then they will determine the cause that brought down the plane. >> ian, we know the national security meeting was called by the officials. what should we read into that? >> reporter: this is following what we have seen after any incident in the air. this is actually egypt's third incident with an airliner in the air. in the past year, we have seen the egyptian president call the security team together to assess the situation and move forward. the last in october when isis blew up an airplane over the
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sinai. egyptian officials called an emergency meeting then. then last march, a man hijacked an airplane from alexandra egypt to cairo. that was diverted to cyprus. both those incidents involved foul play. we are not saying there is any foul play at this moment. we he frankly don't know. it is not unusual to see an emergency meeting of the security council here in egypt as the president tries to learn the latest developments. >> ian lee reporting from cairo. thank you. >> greece has joined the search for flight 804. they deployed two aircraft from above and a frigate and helicopters standing by. i want to go to athens now and bring you journalist elinda
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labropoulou. tell us if authorities have seen anything yet. >> reporter: the greek authorities have been participating in the rescue operation from the very start. it seems the last contact that was made with the plane was with the greek authorities with the greek air traffic controllers just a minute before the plane left the greek air space and cross over into egypt. we understand this is standard procedure when an aircraft crosses from a country to the next. now at the time, the pilot does not appear to have reported any problems of any kind and from what we hear from the greek side, once the plane left the greek air space, two minutes after that, greek authorities lost the plane off radar. immediately they said they contacted egyptian counterparts and this is the last we know of any contact with the plane. after that, we heard the distress signal of some sort. egyptian authorities have since
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said this was not the case. they have denied that. so i think at the moment, the two countries are working closely together searching the eastern mediterranean where the plane was last found to be. this is about 130 miles, nautical miles, off the greek island of capathos. we have military aircraft scanning the area at the moment. a frigate is there to jump in. everyone on board is hoping this is more of a rescue operation. >> elinda, thank you so much for your time. for latest on the investigation, let's go to correspondent richard quest in the beijing bureau. richard, as we step back and look at the information. there was clear weather and everything was fine when they left greek air space.
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there were indications that there was no certain distress signal from the pilots. we are figure out where the distress signal came from. what does all this tell you? >> reporter: well, you are right. very interesting set of circumstances that tells me whatever happened to the aircraft it was immediate and dramatic when the plane went down. just a moment. as a result of all that. forgive me. the microphone just slipped off. as a result of all that, the nature of the incident and the way in which it will have been handled by the crew, specifically to the fact that they were unable to get a mayday out. this does -- you know, at the end of the day, it does suggest either some form of bomb or terrorist activity. also, because we have seen it before, guys, it could be
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related to a mechanical fault and the way which the plane was being flown. certainly the profile of the aircraft and the way the profile of the flight means it was dramatic. >> we know they are not ruling anything out at this point, richard. we know there will be an investigation of every person who saw the plane and touched the plane or boarded the plane and worked on that plane. tell us a little bit about where the investigation you think goes from here. >> reporter: oh, well, the first thing that has to happen is find those black boxes. we say this every time, christine. we always say find the black boxes. the reason, of course, is they hold the secrets of what happened. both in terms of what the pilots were saying to each other on the cockpit voice recorder and on the parameters of the flight data recorder. if there was an explosion, you
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will hear the noise and the reaction. if there was a mechanical failure, you will see what it was that failed. now, once you have done that, you look at it and you can't sit by and do nothing while you wait for the recorders. you are looking at every passenger. you are looking at every potential threat. you are looking at everybody who touched the aircraft from catering to engineering to maintenance and cleaning to baggage handlers and check-in. anybody who could have gotten to the plane. metrojet showed there were vulnerables at the airport. charles de gaulle in paris is a different kettle of fish. even so, i guarantee you, they are examining every potential bit of security tape and every video and everybody who went near 804. >> i'm sure you are right. richard quest, thank you for that this morning. we are following all the details
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of the breaking news. egyptair flight vanishes with 66 people on board. search and rescue under way right now. we are live next. fwlarpz ♪ if you have moderate to severe plaque psoriasis isn't it time to let the real you shine through? introducing otezla, apremilast. otezla is not an injection, or a cream. it's a pill that treats plaque psoriasis differently. some people who took otezla saw 75% clearer skin after 4 months.
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welcome back to cnn's breaking news coverage of missing egyptair flight 804. here is what we know so far. the airbus a-320 was traveling from paris to cairo when it vanished from radar over the mediterranean sea nine hours ago. 66 people were on board including ten crew members. the aircraft went missing at 37,000 feet moments after crossing into egyptian air space. egyptian and french authorities exchanging condolences over what they call the fall of the aircraft. the egyptian military is searching with help from the greek military which is searching 130 nautical miles
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southeast of the island of karpathos. bringing in the veteran pilot is captain desmond ross. the captain of the aviation services live from istanbul. you have been watching the developments and the information we have been able to confirm. give me your read on what happened to this flight. >> you are right. a developing story. a lot of speculation, but my gut feeling is telling me there's been a cataclysmic event on the airplane. the confusion over the emergency message or transmission that people are talking about. it had to be a radio call from the cockpit, which we are told did not happen or a transponder signal. you can dial a code on the transponder and it shows there is an emergency on the aircraft or the emergency locater
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transmitter on impact with the water or ground which emits a signal to hone in on the crash site. there is not much else. if there was a signal of any sort, we should know what it was. the usual sorts of confusion. it's a bit early. at 37,000 feet, flat, no issue normally for an aircraft unless something -- the pilots are not doing anything unusual. the aircraft is in cruise. the only possible conclusion you can draw is either an explosion on board the aircraft caused by what? mechanical failure of some sort. oxygen bottle exploding. a bomb exploding. that indicates terrorism. speculation, again. that area and i said it earlier today is dotted with ships at
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the moment. a normally busy area. mediterranean sea. i'm very confident that somebody will have seen something. i'm very confident that if the aircraft has gone into the water, there will be plenty of ships searching and debris will be found. i think they would find something today before daylight finishes today. i would be very surprised if they don't. >> plenty of daylight. this has been under way now for some hours now. the search and rescue. a lot of resources deployed there in the mediterranean sea. captain desmond ross. thank you. let's get to london now and nic roberts robertson. nic, authorities are careful not to rule anything out as justified in the investigation. recently an official confirmation where they talked about the plane had fallen. a fallen jetliner. until then, it was missing.
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>> reporter: it is too soon because we don't have a declarative information on the expression of condolences between egyptian and french officials. i think it is too soon to read into that. we can actually definitively say the plane has actually crashed. although, that seems to be beyond any doubt, but that's not what's being said officially at this time. you know, the area of scrutiny that i think will come under the microscope at the moment is the aircraft appeared to have been passing out of greek air space into egyptian air space. it was perhaps two minutes into egyptian air space. ten miles, we were told that greek authorities had in fact had been in communication with the aircraft. there was nothing untoward reported with it. this raises the question the expectation the egyptian air
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traffic controllers would contact the aircraft as it came into their air space. we have not received any information from the egyptian authorities whether they tried to communicate with the aircraft. what happened when they tried to communicate with the aircraft? how long they were trying to communicate with it. we don't have that information yet. had the aircraft veered off its flight track? there's no information about that yet. although looking at flight tracking data, it seems to have been on the correct flight path. the fact the flight disappears in the key area. an area, of course, we witnessed with mh-370 flight disappearance with flight 370 where the pilot, suggested, we don't know. that is where the transponders went off the radar. we are at the key point. there is to add what our last guest said, there is a lot of military activity in the
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mediterranean at moment because of the war in syria and what is happening in libya and nato vessels. a british air base not so far away where fighter jets take off. we can understand and know that for certain there would be a lot of military radar and observations within that area of the mediterranean that will perhaps when they go back through the information and provide another layer of detail about what happened to the aircraft. >> they will be looking, i'm sure, nic, at the surveillance footage from charles de gaulle who got on the plane and baggage handlers and everyone who had part in that aircraft. >> reporter: we know there were three security personnel as part of the ten crew from egyptair on board the aircraft. there will be an analysis done of where they got on the plane. did they get on in egypt? did they get on in charles de gaulle?
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obviously there will be scrutiny paid to the security checks that were put in place on them as well. as well as the security checks caught on video at charles de gaulle on the passengers and background checks and anyone who came in contact with the plane at charles de gaulle. everyone that came in physical contact with it. likely the same for when the aircraft originally departed cairo en route to charles de gaulle as well. the same scrutiny. the security checks, of course, we have become familiar with now. just a few weeks ago when an egyptair plane hijacked by a man purported to have a suicide vest. we were able to have video of him going through the security at alexandra airport. it was diverted to cyprus. it turned out to be a hoax. that level of surveillance is
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available. it will be scrutinized right now. it may be made public later. >> thank you, nic robertson in london. again, 66 people on board. 15 french citizens and one british. families started arriving at the airport to get information on loved ones. for the latest on the jet and its flight path and how weather could play a role in the search and recovery efforts, i want to bring in derek van dam in the weather center. clear skies at the time of the flight. >> you are right, christine. i checked every weather variable to have an impact. turbulence, thunderstorms, wind shear. none of it was present at the last moment of contact with the egyptair flight 804. here is the flight trajectory. here is the mediterranean.
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and whatever incident took place. and water temperatures with the likely search and rescue efforts that will take place across the region are roughly between 65 to 72 degrees. think about your body temperature. 96 degrees roughly. if you submerge yourself in water, that will impact your core temperature. that can have an impact with survival rates. especially for elderly and the young and anyone in between as well. survival rate with the types of water temperatures typically between 2 hours and up to 40 hours for a young healthy adult. in terms of weather, we have a storm system to increase the winds and cloud cover and chances of wind. that doesn't happen until friday. christine, we have a narrow window of time. at least 24 hours where the weather should be pretty good for the potential search and recovery effort. >> and plenty of daylight left. talk about the marine traffic. this is a busy part of the
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mediterranean sea. normally a lot of military aircraft in the vicinity. also the refugee crisis means the seas are more crowded than usual. >> there are a lot of shipping vessels in the area. coming off the greek islands. in terms of the weather factor to this, it doesn't appear that will impact any of the search and recovery vessels deployed to the area for the foreseeable future. >> derek van dam in the cnn weather center. thank you. that egyptair flight from paris to cairo vanishes. "new day" picks up our breaking news next. [phone rings] [man] hello,totten designs. sales department? yes...i can put you right through.
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shoshow me more like this.e. show me "previously watched." what's recommended for me. x1 makes it easy to find what you love. call or go online and switch to x1. only with xfinity. this is cnn breaking news. >> good morning. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. this is "new day." we begin with breaking news.
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a frantic search over the mediterranean sea for egyptair flight 804. this flight vanished nine hours ago while cruising at 37,000 feet minutes before entering egyptian air space. the flight had 66 people on board. it originated from paris and 45 minutes there's no word yet of any may day or word from the pilots of any problems, but there are conflicting reports about possible distress signals in the area where the flight disappeared. the families of those on board were alerted. there's been an emergency response. areas set up at the airport and of course they're waiting for answers and for us there are lots of questions about the plane's safety record, flight crew, security and possible terror links so we have this breaking news story covered the way only cnn can. so let's begin live at cairo international airport.
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the word from there. >> reporter: well, good morning. what we're waiting to hear right now is any -- any word from the search area that the egyptian military is currently searching with coordination from the greeks. we're hearing from the egyptian armd forces that they have deployed all the resources possible. they have jets, they have boats. they are looking over this area which is about 175 miles north of the egyptian coastline. that is where the area they're saying that this plane last appeared on radar. we're also being told that a military hospital is being prepared for anyone who possibly survived that, but right now, the main focus is trying to find where this airplane went. where did it crash? now egyptian officials have yet to say that the plane has crashed, but it's been eight hours. we'veea


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