The black boxes from a passenger plane which crashed in the sea soon after take-off from Jakarta on Saturday have been located. The black box recorders record conversations in the cockpit as well as an array of data from the plane’s control systems. Indonesian ships has been searching the crash site with navy divers hoping to retrieve the two flight recorders over the next 24 hours.
The Sriwijaya Air Boeing 737-500 jet was carrying 62 people when it vanished from radar on its journey to Borneo.
(The crash of the Boeing 737-500 model is likely unrelated to the current controversies surrounding the later Boeing 737 Max model)
Soerjanto Tjahjono, head of Indonesia’s transport safety, announced late yesterday that they’d located the position of the two black boxes.
“Divers will start looking for them now and hopefully it won’t be long before we get them.”
Family members gathered at the victim identification centre in Jakarta and at a crisis centre in Pontianak, the scheduled destination for the plane, waiting for news of their family and friends.
The seas north of the Jakarta airport are relatively shallow and the weather has improved since the rescue operations started, making recovery easier. Rescue supervisors have admitted it had become a recovery mission, not a search and rescue.
Police are asking families of the victims to provide DNA samples and dental records to assist with the identification process of remains recovered already from the crash site.
The Sriwijaya Air passenger took off from Jakarta airport just after 2.30 in the afternoon on Saturday.
When passing through 11,000 feet the plane lost contact with air traffic controllers. It was flying to Pontianak, in West Kalimantan province in the west of the island of Borneo. The flight should have taken 90 minutes. There was no distress signal sent by the flight crew. The plane dropped 10,000 feet in less than a minute indicating a catastrophic failure of the flight systems or break up of the plane.
The plane was carrying 50 passengers, including 7 children and 3 babies, plus 12 crew. Everyone on board was Indonesian.
SOURCE: Reuters | CNN
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