Disasters & Accidents

Indonesia intensifies search for crashed plane’s black box

Jakarta, Jan 12 (efe-epa).- Indonesian rescue teams on Tuesday intensified the search for the black box of the Sriwijaya Air plane that crashed into sea over the weekend with 62 people on board.

Search teams are still recovering the victims’ bodies for identification.

The Indonesian navy said on social media that it has managed to narrow down the possible location of the box – made up of two components: the cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder – to an area not more than 140 meters long at the bottom of the sea.

The components are crucial in determining the causes of the crash of the Sriwijaya Air commercial plane that disappeared from radar on Saturday, minutes after taking off from Jakarta.

“The black box might be there, but it’s not that easy. My experience in leading Lion Air search and rescue [shows it] also takes time because there is still a lot of debris there,” Indonesia Navy Commander Admiral Yudo Margono said Tuesday.

Divers on Tuesday were concentrating their efforts on unraveling the wreckage of the aircraft to bring it up to the surface, the Indonesian website Tempo said.

Meanwhile, the task of recovering and identifying the bodies of the victims continues, and a total of 58 DNA samples have been extracted so far, police spokesperson Rusdi Harrono said at a press conference.

On Monday, forensic teams made its first, and for now only identification of a victim of the accident, 29-year-old flight attendant, Okky Bisma.

The plane, a Boeing 737 registered in 1994, crashed into the Java Sea a few minutes after taking off from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport en route to Pontianak, capital of West Borneo.

Authorities said Saturday afternoon that contact with the aircraft had been lost at 2.40 pm, some 13 minutes after takeoff and without the Emergency Locator Transmitter having issued any warning.

The plane abruptly changed direction and rapidly lost height, prompting the control tower to ask pilots what was happening when it disappeared from radar.

It is not yet known what caused the accident of the airplane, which was carrying 50 passengers aboard, including 10 minors and 12 crew members, all of them Indonesian. EFE-EPA


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