An investigation by the Civil Aviation Authority of China into the fatal crash of a China Eastern Airlines Boeing 737-800 has yet to disclose reasons for the crash.

In a Chinese language statement on its website, two years after the 21 March 2022 crash that killed 123 passengers and nine crew, the CAAC says that its probe has turned up no anomalies or problems with the aircraft, its crew, or the aircraft’s maintenance.

China Eastern 737 wreckage

Source: Xinhua/Shutterstock

China Eastern lost a Boeing 737-800 on 21 March, with 132 passengers and crew

In addition, it has found no evidence of dangerous goods in the cargo or luggage.

The CAAC has yet to publish a final report into the disaster, although ICAO rules call for a detailed report to be published one year after a crash, containing analysis into causes, as well as safety lessons for the broader aviation community.

The crash saw the aircraft (B-1791) plunge from 29,000ft to the ground near Wuzhou in China’s central Guangxi province while operating the Kunming-Guangzhou route. No distress call was received.

The CAAC’s statement is similar to one issued on the first anniversary of the crash, which stated that the accident was “very complicated” and that analysis would be produced in a “timely manner.”

There is evidence, however, that the crash may have been deliberate.

As part of the investigation, the aircraft’s cockpit-voice and flight-data recorders were sent to the USA for analysis by the National Transportation Safety Board.

In May 2022, US government sources told The Wall Street Journal that the crash of the jet was intentional, citing data from the recorders.

“The plane did what it was told to do by someone in the cockpit,” said an anonymous source quoted by the newspaper.

The CAAC has previously dismissed this possibility without offering evidence to disqualify a pilot suicide theory.

“In the future, the technical investigation team will continue to carry out experimental verification and cause analysis and release relevant information in a timely manner based on the progress of the investigation,” says the CAAC.