Connect with us

World

Search for AirAsia plane turns to Java Sea, relatives wait

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 

on

Search for AirAsia plane turns to Java Sea, relatives wait | The Thaiger

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Search for AirAsia plane turns to Java Sea, relatives wait
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Indonesia searched the Java Sea on Monday for an AirAsia plane carrying 162 people that went missing after its pilot failed to gain permission to alter course to avoid a storm cell during a flight from the Indonesian city of Surabaya to Singapore.

Flight QZ8501 did not issue a distress signal and disappeared five minutes after requesting a change of course on Sunday, said government and transport officials.

Air Force spokesman Hadi Thahjanto said two C-130 Hercules planes were focusing their search efforts in areas northeast of Indonesia’s Bangka island, which lies roughly halfway between Surabaya and Singapore, in the Java Sea.

Singapore said it had sent two naval vessels to help look for the Airbus A320-200 operated by Indonesia AirAsia, adding a C-130 took part in the search on Sunday.

Malaysia would send three naval vessels and a C-130 to assist, Singapore’s Channel News Asia television reported. An Australian P3 Orion surveillance plane left Darwin to join the search, Australian Broadcasting Corporation radio said. The United States, Britain, South Korea and India also offered help.

“We have been coordinating with parties from Singapore, Malaysia and Australia who have (expressed) a willingness to assist,” Tataog Zainuddin, director of operations at the Indonesian National Search and Rescue Agency, told Reuters.

Indonesia AirAsia is 49 percent owned by Malaysia-based budget carrier Air Asia. The AirAsia group, including affiliates in Thailand, the Philippines and India, has not suffered a crash since its Malaysian budget operations began in 2002.

Onboard Flight QZ8501 were 155 Indonesians, three South Koreans, one person each from Singapore, Malaysia and Britain, while the co-pilot was French.

There was bad weather in the area at the time and the aircraft had been flying at 32,000 feet before asking to fly at 38,000 feet to avoid clouds, said Joko Muryo Atmodjo, air transportation director at Indonesia’s transport ministry.

Permission had not yet been given due to traffic in the area, and five minutes later, at 6:17 a.m. on Sunday (2317 GMT Saturday), the plane lost contact with air traffic control, Atmodjo added.

The pilot “was requesting deviation due to en-route weather before communication with the aircraft was lost,” the airline said.

“We are cooperating with the relevant authorities to the fullest extent to determine the cause of this incident,” said Indonesia AirAsia Chief Executive Sunu Widyatmoko.

“WORST NIGHTMARE”

The Indonesian pilot was experienced and the plane last underwent maintenance in mid-November, the airline said. The aircraft had accumulated about 23,000 flight hours in some 13,600 flights, according to Airbus.

Malaysia AirAsia chief Tony Fernandes flew to Surabaya and, along with Indonesian officials, updated distraught relatives of passengers at a makeshift crisis centre at the airport in Indonesia’s second-largest city.

“This is my worst nightmare,” Fernandes said on Twitter. “But there’s no stopping”, he said of the search.

AirAsia swapped the distinctive bright red of its logo for grey on social media accounts and the company website as it faced its biggest ever challenge.

The incident caps a disastrous year for Malaysia-affiliated airlines. Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 went missing on March 8 on a trip from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 passengers and crew on board and has not been found.

On July 17, the same airline’s Flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.

PRAYING FOR PASSENGERS

Indonesian President Joko Widodo urged his people to pray for the safety of the passengers and crew. During his Sunday address at St. Peter’s Square in the Vatican, Pope Francis said those on board were in his prayers.

Louise Sidharta was at Singapore’s Changi Airport waiting for her fiancée to return from a family holiday.

“It was supposed to be their last vacation before we got married,” she said.

A man named Purnomo told TVOne in Surabaya of his lucky escape. “I should have been on the flight … but this morning I had an emergency. I had my passport in hand.”

Like all affiliates of AirAsia, Indonesia AirAsia operates Airbus jets, of which it has 30 of the A320 model.

AirAsia has ordered several hundred jets from the European planemaker, making it one of its most important customers. The missing plane has been in service for just over six years, according to airfleets.net.

Indonesian officials from the civil aviation authority and transport safety committee, which are responsible for crash investigations, arrived in Surabaya on Sunday. A transport ministry official said Indonesia would handle the probe.

“The aircraft was registered in Indonesia and it looks to be missing over Indonesian territory, so we will lead the investigation,” said the official, who asked not to be named as he was not authorised to speak to the media.

“We have the expertise to do this.”

— Phuket Gazette Editors

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.



Find more SE Asian News courtesy of The Thaiger.

Broke? Find employment in Southeast Asia with JobCute Thailand and SmartJob Indonesia. Rich? Invest in real estate across Asia with FazWaz Property Group or get out on a yacht anywhere with Boatcrowd. Even book medical procedures worldwide with MyMediTravel, all powered by DB Ventures.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hong Kong

Hong Kong property investors turn to SE Asia

The Thaiger

Published

on

Hong Kong property investors turn to SE Asia | The Thaiger

From luxury Singapore apartments to Malaysian seafront condos, Hong Kong investors are shifting cash into Southeast Asian property, demoralised by increasingly violent protests as well as the China-US trade war.

Millions have taken to the streets during four months of pro-democracy demonstrations in the southern Chinese city, hammering tourism while also forcing businesses to lay off staff – and the property sector is feeling the pain. Property stocks in one of the world’s most expensive housing markets have plummeted since June, with developers being forced to offer discounts on new projects and cutting office rents.

Hong Kong businessman Peter Ng bought a condominium on the Malaysian island of Penang – which has a substantial ethnic Chinese population and is popular among Hong Kongers – after the protests erupted.

A 48 year old stock market and property investor told AFP he was worried about long-term damage to the Hong Kong economy if the unrest persists.

“The instability was a catalyst for me. Investors will always look at things like that, political stability.”

And Derek Lee, a Hong Kong businessman who owns a Penang apartment, said he knew others in the semi-autonomous city who were considering investing in south east Asian property because of the unrest.

“People are thinking about how to quicken their ideas, how to make a more stable life,” the 55 year old told AFP. Part of the allure of Malaysia is its relative affordability and prices much lower than Hong Kong.

The Malaysia site of Southeast Asian real estate platform Property Guru has seen a 35 percent increase in visits from Hong Kong, according to its CEO Hari Krishnan.

China-fuelled boom

While Hong Kong’s protests are primarily pushing for greater democratic freedoms and police accountability, the summer of rage has been fuelled by years of simmering anger towards Beijing and the local government over falling living standards and the high costs of living.

Hong Kong’s property market is one of least affordable in the world with sky-high prices fuelled, in part, by wealthy mainlanders snapping up investments in a city which has failed for years to build enough flats to meet demand.

But now mainland Chinese, who traditionally viewed property in Hong Kong as a safe investment, are opting for rival financial hub Singapore as a result of the protests and the US-China trade war, according to observers.

There has been a jump this year in sales of luxury apartments in the city-state, which like Hong Kong is known for pricey property, driven partially by mainland Chinese buyers, according to the consultancy OrangeTee & Tie.

“The protests in Hong Kong have made some of the (mainland Chinese) based there… (more concerned) about investing in Hong Kong real estate, so they carry that investment to Singapore,” said Alan Cheong, executive director of the research and consultancy team at Savills.

As well as hitting China’s economy, trade tensions may have discouraged some Chinese from investing in the West and pushed them towards Singapore, with its mostly ethnic Chinese population.

“I think they don’t want to go to the West.”

Singapore is “the closest country culturally to China other than Hong Kong and I think they feel more comfortable with that”. There are further signs the stable, tightly ruled city is benefiting from the Hong Kong turmoil. Goldman Sachs last week estimated as much as $4 billion flowed out of Hong Kong to Singapore this summer.

And analysts warned there was little hope of Hong Kong’s property market recovering soon.

“Hong Kong property share prices have corrected by about 15 to 25% since July,” said Raymond Cheng, head of Hong Kong and China property at CGS-CIMB Securities International.

Residential sales were still holding up but only when developers offered discounts, office rents were expected to fall by as much as five percent and shop rents were also badly affected, he said.

But despite the unrest, businessman Ng, who will rent his Penang property and has no plans to move there permanently for now, was still hopeful about Hong Kong’s long-term prospects.

“The problem may not be solved in the short term but it is not so serious as pessimists think. Everything is still in the government’s control.”

SOURCE: Agence France-Presse

PHOTO: newlaunches.sg

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
Continue Reading

Weather

Typhoon Hagibis kills 11 in Japan, rescue underway with up to 100 missing

The Thaiger

Published

on

Typhoon Hagibis kills 11 in Japan, rescue underway with up to 100 missing | The Thaiger

Japan’s military is racing to help people trapped by flooding after powerful Typhoon Hagibis as it ripped across the country. So far at least 11 people have died and dozens remain missing.

The storm’s heavy rain triggered deadly landslides and caused rivers to burst their banks. The destruction forced Rugby World Cup organisers to cancel the third match of the tournament though the key Japan-Scotland clash will go ahead.

By this morning, the significantly weakened storm had moved back off land, but serious flooding was reported in central Japan’s Nagano, where a burst levee sent water from the Chikuma river gushing into residential neighbourhoods, flooding homes up to the second floor.

Japan’s military have deployed helicopters to rescue people seen standing on balconies waving towels to attract attention.

“Overnight, we issued evacuation orders to 427 households, 1,417 individuals,” Yasuhiro Yamaguchi, an emergency official in Nagano city, told AFP, adding that it was unclear how many homes had been affected.

Aerial footage showed a row of bullet trains half-submerged in muddy waters at a depot in Nagano.

Hagibis smashed into the main Japanese island of Honshu around 7pm (1000 GMT) Saturday as one of the most violent typhoons in recent years, with wind gusts of up to 216 kilometres per hour (134 miles per hour).

Well before making landfall, the outer bands of the storm claimed their first victim, a driver whose van was flipped over in the strong gusts. Several more deaths were confirmed Saturday night, including a man killed in a landslide and another pulled from a flooded home.

And the toll continued to rise as the full scale of the disaster became clearer Sunday morning, with bodies recovered from submerged cars and landslides across several regions of the country.

National broadcaster NHK reports at least 99 people had been injured and more than a dozen were missing after the storm. Among the missing were eight people from a cargo ship that sank Saturday night in Tokyo Bay. The coast guard said they had rescued four of the Panama-flagged ship’s crew but were still searching for the others.

At the storm’s peak, more than seven million people were placed under non-compulsory evacuation orders, with tens of thousands heeding the call and moving into government shelters. Japan’s Meteorological Agency issued its highest-level rain disaster warning, saying “unprecedented” downpours were expected.

“The water came up higher than my head in the house,” Hajime Tokuda, a finance professional living in Kawasaki near Tokyo told AFP.

He moved to his family’s home nearby, but that flooded too and they had to be rescued by boat.

In Saitama’s Higashi Matsuyama city, northwest of Tokyo, rice and flower farmers were counting their losses, with water submerging warehouses full of freshly harvested product.

“We never had a flood like this before in this neighbourhood,” said one farmer, who declined to give his name.

“We cannot even go into the flower warehouse due to the water. I don’t know where to start cleaning this mess.”

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
Continue Reading

Weather

‘Unprecedented’ Typhoon Hagibis slams into Japan

The Thaiger

Published

on

‘Unprecedented’ Typhoon Hagibis slams into Japan | The Thaiger

Powerful typhoon Hagibis has made landfall in Japan as torrential rain and winds have already lashed the country causing floods and mudslides.

“The eye of Typhoon Hagibis made landfall shortly before 19:00 (1000 GMT) in Izu Peninsula”, southwest of Tokyo, said the Japan Meteorological Agency.

Powerful Typhoon Hagibis roared towards Japan’s coast on Saturday, killing one person and bringing “unprecedented” downpours that prompted authorities to issue their highest-level rain disaster warning.

More than 3.2 million people have been placed under non-compulsory evacuation orders as authorities warn of imminent flood and landslide danger after hours of torrential rains.

Hagibis has caused enormous disruption, forcing the cancellation of two Rugby World Cup matches, delaying the Japanese Grand Prix and grounding all flights in the Tokyo region.

Hours before the worst of the storm arrived, its outer bands claimed the first casualty in Chiba, east of Tokyo, where a man was killed when high winds flipped his car. Hours of torrential rain prompted the JMA to issue their highest-level emergency rain warning for heavy rain for parts of Tokyo and surrounding areas.

“Unprecedented heavy rain has been seen in cities, towns and villages for which the emergency warning was issued,” JMA forecaster Yasushi Kajiwara said at a press briefing.

“The possibility is extremely high that disasters such as landslides and floods have already occurred. It is important to take action that can help save your lives.”

At least one landslide was already confirmed, engulfing three homes in Sagamihara, southwest of Tokyo, where an elderly man was rescued.

Hagibis is forecast to be the first storm rated “very strong” to hit the main island of Honshu since 1991, when the category system was introduced, a JMA official said.

By early afternoon, 3.25 million people were under non-mandatory evacuation orders, and more than 13,500 people had moved to shelters, including some whose homes were damaged by a powerful typhoon that hit the region last month.

“I evacuated because my roof was ripped off by the other typhoon and rain came in. I’m so worried about my house,” a 93 year old man told national broadcaster NHK as he sheltered at a centre in Tateyama in Chiba east of Tokyo.

Japan is hit by around 20 typhoons a year, though the capital is not usually badly affected. Hagibis has hit the region just weeks after Typhoon Faxai hit the area with similar strength, killing two and causing major damage in Chiba.

SOURCE: Agence France-Presse

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
Continue Reading

The Thaiger Newsletter

Keep up with all the day’s news. Subscribe here.

The latest news and information from Thailand.

* indicates required
ไทยแชมป์วอลเลย์บอลอาเซียนกรังด์ปรีซ์สนาม 2 รางวัลรายบุคคล | The Thaiger
วอลเลย์บอล7 days ago

ไทยแชมป์วอลเลย์บอลอาเซียนกรังด์ปรีซ์สนาม 2 รางวัลรายบุคคล

ตรวจหวย1ตุลาคม2562 ผลรางวัลที่ 1 เลขท้าย 2 ตัว 3 ตัว เลขหน้า 3 ตัว และรางวัลอื่น ๆ | The Thaiger
ตรวจหวย2 weeks ago

ตรวจหวย1ตุลาคม2562 ผลรางวัลที่ 1 เลขท้าย 2 ตัว 3 ตัว เลขหน้า 3 ตัว และรางวัลอื่น ๆ

ถ่ายทอดสดหวย 1 ตุลาคม 2562 ลุ้นรางวัลที่ 1 สลากกินแบ่งรัฐบาล | The Thaiger
ตรวจหวย2 weeks ago

ถ่ายทอดสดหวย 1 ตุลาคม 2562 ลุ้นรางวัลที่ 1 สลากกินแบ่งรัฐบาล

สีจิ้นผิงกล่าวสุนทรพจน์ ครบรอบ 70 ปีก่อตั้งสาธารณรัฐประชาชนจีน -ลิงก์ถ่ายทอดสด | The Thaiger
ต่างประเทศ2 weeks ago

สีจิ้นผิงกล่าวสุนทรพจน์ ครบรอบ 70 ปีก่อตั้งสาธารณรัฐประชาชนจีน -ลิงก์ถ่ายทอดสด

คลิปไฮไลท์วอลเลย์บอลเวิลด์คัพ 2019 นัดที่ 5 | The Thaiger
วอลเลย์บอล3 weeks ago

คลิปไฮไลท์วอลเลย์บอลเวิลด์คัพ 2019 นัดที่ 5

คลิปไฮไลท์ วอลเลย์บอลเวิลด์คัพ 2019 นัดที่ 1 | The Thaiger
วอลเลย์บอล4 weeks ago

คลิปไฮไลท์ วอลเลย์บอลเวิลด์คัพ 2019 นัดที่ 1

Paramount เตรียมรีเมค FACE/OFF หนังบู๊ระดับตำนาน | The Thaiger
หนัง1 month ago

Paramount เตรียมรีเมค FACE/OFF หนังบู๊ระดับตำนาน

ประยุทธ์ โต้ รัฐบาลไหนก็มีตำหนิทั้งนั้น “ถึงเวลาก็อ้างอย่างที่ผมอ้าง” | The Thaiger
ข่าวการเมือง1 month ago

ประยุทธ์ โต้ รัฐบาลไหนก็มีตำหนิทั้งนั้น “ถึงเวลาก็อ้างอย่างที่ผมอ้าง”

อารัมภบท รักฉุดใจนายฉุกเฉิน My ambulance ตอนแรก 6 กันยานี้ | The Thaiger
บันเทิง1 month ago

อารัมภบท รักฉุดใจนายฉุกเฉิน My ambulance ตอนแรก 6 กันยานี้

วอลเลย์บอลหญิงชิงแชมป์ยุโรป 2019 โฉมหน้า 4 ทีมตัดเชือกรอบรอง | The Thaiger
วอลเลย์บอล1 month ago

วอลเลย์บอลหญิงชิงแชมป์ยุโรป 2019 โฉมหน้า 4 ทีมตัดเชือกรอบรอง

บิ๊กไบก์หัวร้อน ตบหัวลุงพิการผัวะ ‘รถกูเป็นอะไร มีปัญญารับผิดชอบไหม’ | The Thaiger
ข่าวไทย1 month ago

บิ๊กไบก์หัวร้อน ตบหัวลุงพิการผัวะ ‘รถกูเป็นอะไร มีปัญญารับผิดชอบไหม’

“มิน พีชญา”ทุ่มสุดตัว นัวผู้ชายเกือบสิบ ป่วยโรคติดเซ็กซ์ ใน”สองนรี” | The Thaiger
บันเทิง1 month ago

“มิน พีชญา”ทุ่มสุดตัว นัวผู้ชายเกือบสิบ ป่วยโรคติดเซ็กซ์ ใน”สองนรี”

ไฮไลท์ผู้เล่นตัวท้อป 8 ทีมสุดท้าย วอลเลย์บอลชิงแชมป์ยุโรป 2019 | The Thaiger
วอลเลย์บอล1 month ago

ไฮไลท์ผู้เล่นตัวท้อป 8 ทีมสุดท้าย วอลเลย์บอลชิงแชมป์ยุโรป 2019

เคาะแล้ว สนามโคราช จัดแข่งวอลเลย์บอลคัดโอลิมปิก | The Thaiger
วอลเลย์บอล1 month ago

เคาะแล้ว สนามโคราช จัดแข่งวอลเลย์บอลคัดโอลิมปิก

คลิปวงจรปิดฉาว อส.ชลบุรี ทุบเด็กแว้นนอนเจ็บคาเตียงโรงพยาบาล | The Thaiger
ข่าวไทย2 months ago

คลิปวงจรปิดฉาว อส.ชลบุรี ทุบเด็กแว้นนอนเจ็บคาเตียงโรงพยาบาล

Trending