Body parts were found on Sunday off the coast of the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, where a Boeing with 62 people on board crashed into the sea.
“This morning we received two suitcases, one with the passengers’ personal effects and the other with body parts,” Jakarta police spokesman Yusri Yunus told Metro TV. The police “are working to identify them”. The plane’s black boxes were also found, according to local authorities.
Sriwijaya Air’s plane crashed on Saturday morning (9), according to the country’s Transport Minister, Budi Karya. The plane bound for Pontianak, in the province of West Kalimantan, remained incommunicado four minutes after takeoff.
According to detik.com, the crash was 20 km from Jakarta Airport, near Laki Island.
For now, authorities have not provided details on the possible causes of the incident. Search operations are ongoing, but it seems unlikely that any survivors will be found.
The minister told a press conference that of the 62 people on board, 12 were crew members. Among the passengers there were 10 children. They were all Indonesians.
Before the radar disappeared, the plane lost 10,000 feet in less than a minute, according to the FlightRadar24 site, which monitors the flights.
Abdul Rasyid, an Indonesian navy official, told reporters earlier that the coordinates of the plane had already been determined and ships had been dispatched to the scene.
A military vessel “detected a signal from the device (…) and a team of divers descended and found parts of the plane, such as fragments and parts with identification numbers”, said Hadi Tjahjanto, commander of the Indonesian armed forces, said in a note from the ministry dos Transportes, which did not specify whether the signal came from the black box.
Hundreds of naval and rescue service personnel, as well as ten warships, are participating in the search. The found remains were transported to the main port of Jakarta, where a first-aid post was set up.
The aircraft is an almost 27-year-old Boeing 737-500, according to information in the Flightradar24 tracking file, and according to Sriwijaya Air general manager Jefferson Irwin Jauwena, the vehicle was in good condition.
At the time of take-off, it was raining heavily at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, which had already delayed the plane’s departure by 30 minutes. The flight, which reportedly lasted about 1.5 hours, lost contact at around 4.30 a.m. (Brasilia time; 2.30 p.m. in Jakarta).
The airline also said in a statement that it was continuing to collect more detailed information on the case, a statement similar to that of a Boeing spokesperson, who said it was closely monitoring the situation and was trying to collect more data.
A Boeing 737 Max operated by the Lion Air airline crashed off the coast of Indonesia in late 2018, killing all 189 passengers and crew on board. This accident and another involving the same model in Ethiopia were attributed to technical flaws, and the manufacturer was ordered to pay a fine of 2.5 billion US dollars (13.56 billion reais) for misleading authorities in the process of approving this model. .
The plane that crashed on Saturday is an older model and lacks the system involved in the MAX line safety crisis.
Founded in 2003, the company Sriwijaya Air, based in Jakarta, operates mainly in Indonesia. So far, it had a strong safety record, with no casualties on board in four incidents recorded in the Aviation Safety Networ k database.
Experts say planes like the 737-500 leased by Sriwijaya Air are being replaced with newer models that use less fuel. These planes typically have an economic lifespan of 25 years, which means they become too expensive to continue flying after this period compared to newer models, even though they are designed to last longer.