The crash left a deep pit in the mountainside about the size of a football field, Xinhua said, citing rescuers. Chen Weihao, who saw the falling plane while working on a farm, told the news agency it hit a gap in the mountain where nobody lived. “The plane looked to be in one piece when it nosedived. Within seconds, it crashed,” Chen said.

Mud-stained wallets. Bank cards. Official identity cards. Poignant reminders of 132 lives presumed lost were lined up by rescue workers scouring a remote Chinese mountainside Tuesday for the wreckage of a China Eastern flight that one day earlier inexplicably fell from the sky and burst into a huge fireball, AP reports.

No survivors have been found among the 123 passengers and nine crew members. Video clips posted by China’s state media show small pieces of the Boeing 737-800 plane scattered over a wide forested area, some in green fields, others in burnt-out patches with raw earth exposed after fires burned in the trees. Each piece of debris has a number next to it, the larger ones marked off by police tape.

Search teams planned to work through the night using their hands, picks, sniffer dogs and other equipment to look for survivors, state broadcaster CCTV reported.

The steep, rough terrain and the huge size of the debris field were complicating the search for the black box, which holds the flight data and cockpit voice recorder, CCTV and the official Xinhua News Agency said.to drop out of the sky shortly before it would have begun its descent to the southern China metropolis of Guangzhou remained a mystery.

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