Indonesia’s Lion Air plane crashes into sea with 189 passengers

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JAKARTA: A Lion Air passenger jet carrying 189 persons has been reported to crash into the sea shortly after takeoff from here, said Indonesia’s disaster agency.

According to the disaster agency’s spokesperson, there were no survivors found from crashed LionAir flight JT610. This was reported by CGTN on Twitter.

Yusuf Latif, the search and rescue agency spokesman, said that the search operations were still underway for the remains of the plane, that lost contact with the air traffic control around 6.30am that was en route to Pangkal Pinang on the island of Bangka.

Talking to AFP, Latif said, “The plane crashed into water about 30 to 40 metres deep.”

Sindu Rayahu, Directorate General of Civil Aviation in the Transport Ministry said that the plane was carrying 178 adult passengers, one child and two babies, along with two pilots and five flight attendants.

“The plane had requested to return to base before finally disappearing into the radar.” Rayahu added in the statement.

According to various Indian media reports, the captain of the Lion Air jet has been identified as Bhavye Suneja, an Indian who has been working with Lion Air since 2011 and had over 6,000 flying hours to his record.

The Indonesian Finance Minister has confirmed that around 20 officials from the Finance Ministry was on the JT610 that crashed into the sea.

The Flightradar website that tracked the plane, the crashed aircraft is said to be a Boeing 737 – and was shown looping south on the take-off and then heading north before the flight path ended all of a sudden over the Java Sea, not far from the coast.

Lion Air, a low cost airline, has been reportedly involved in many incidents.

With inputs from AFP

File photo: AFP

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