Indonesian plane crashes off Jakarta

Relatives of passengers of Lion Air flight JT610 that crashed into the sea cry at Depati Amir airport in Pangkal Pinang Indonesia

Indonesian authorities have mounted a search and rescue operation for a missing Lion Air plane, which lost contact with air traffic controllers at 6.33am on Monday according to The Straits Times.

"The plane crashed into water about 30 to 40 metres deep", Search and Rescue Agency spokesman Yusuf Latif told AFP.

The Lion Air, Flight JT610 had just left the Indonesian capital on the morning of Monday, October 29 at 6.20am bound for Pangkal Pinang where it was expected to land at 7.20am.

Spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said the aircraft was carrying up to 182 passengers, including one child and two babies, and seven crew members on the flight to Pangkal Pinang on an island chain off Sumatra.

Syaugi said the search and rescue teams had come from Jakarta, Bandung and Lampung and were headed to Tanjung Karawang, where the plane is believed to have gone down.

A Lion Air Boeing 737 passenger plane with almost 200 people on board has come down after taking off from Jakarta, say Indonesian officials.

"We are still trying to dive to search for the plane", said Air Marshal Syaugi.

First Post reported that a tug boat saw the plane fall out of the air about 13 minutes after the aircraft took off.

The translation in one of his tweets reads, in part, "The fall of the Lion Air plane JT 610 near facilities subsidiary PT Pertamina (Persero)..."

Lion Air is a budget airline based in the country.




An official of Indonesia's safety transport committee said he could not confirm the cause of the crash.

Meant for short-haul travel, the single-aisle plane can fit a maximum of 210 passengers.

According to Indonesian media, TribunNews, the aircraft's final contact was at 06.33 WIB with Jakarta Air Traffic Control.

"We are there already, our vessels, our helicopter is hovering above the waters, to assist", he said.

The order was previously listed as unidentified on Boeing's Orders and Deliveries website.

A 12-year-old boy was the sole survivor of a plane crash that killed 8 people in mountainous eastern Indonesia in August. Engine maker CFM International says it's standing by to offer assistance to Lion Air, CNBC reported, citing a company statement.

In 2014, an AirAsia plane crashed with the loss of 162 lives.

Incidentally, Lion Air was removed from the European Union's air safety blacklist in June 2016.

The country's carriers have in the past faced years-long bans from entering European Union and U.S. airspace over their safety records.

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