Disasters & Accidents

Indonesia temporarily suspends crashed plane’s wreckage search

Jakarta, Jan 13 (efe-epa).- Bad weather forced Indonesian authorities to temporarily suspend the search for one of the black boxes and remains of the victims of the Sriwijaya Airlines plane, which crashed Saturday at sea with 62 people on board.

Sugarin, who uses only one name and works with the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency, told reporters that strong winds and waves of more than two meters impeded the search.

Rescue teams said they could only find some remains of the Boeing 737-524 aircraft Wednesday, and that they hope to resume tasks as soon as possible, possibly Thursday morning.

The day before, divers were able to rescue from the seabed, more than 20 meters deep, one of the two black boxes of the plane, which records flight data such as speed and height.

Now they are focused on finding the other black box, which records conversations in the cockpit.

Black boxes are essential to determine the causes of the plane crashing in the Java Sea shortly after taking off from the Sukarno-Hatta International Airport in the Indonesian capital to Pontianak, capital of West Borneo.

Meanwhile, work continues to identify the bodies of the victims with the analysis of some 60 bags with human remains recovered from the scene of the accident and found in a hospital in Jakarta.

Thanks to DNA samples from families, four victims have been identified: two crew members aged 29 and 38 years and two passengers aged 36 and 50 years.

The Transport Ministry reported Tuesday that the aircraft registered in 1994 passed a routine review by the General Directorate of Civil Aviation in November 2020.

Indonesian authorities announced Saturday afternoon that contact with the aircraft had been lost at 1440 local time (6.40 GMT), about 13 minutes after takeoff and without the Emergency Locator Transmitter (ELT) having issued any notice.

At the time, the plane had abruptly changed direction, prompting the control tower to ask the pilots what was happening when it suddenly disappeared from radar.

According to the flight log, there were 50 passengers on board, including three babies and seven other minors, and 12 crew members, all of them Indonesian nationality. EFE-EPA


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