A Sriwijaya Air plane carrying 62 people on board is believed to have crashed shortly after taking off from Jakarta, according to Indonesia’s Head Of National Transportation Safety Committee, Suryanto Cahyono, CNN reported.
Sriwijaya Air flight SJY 182 from Jakarta to Pontianak lost contact at 2:40 p.m. Western Indonesian Time (2:40 a.m. ET) on Saturday.
The missing Indonesia plane was carrying 50 passengers — 43 adults and 7 children — as well as 12 crew members, Indonesia’s Minister of Transportation Budi Karya Sumadi said during a press conference.
Indonesia’s search and rescue agency, Basarnas, is now conducting a search operation, he added.
A high-ranking Basarnas officer said at a press conference that their officers on the ground are finding debris around Lancang Island — located in chain of islands to the north of Jakarta’s coast — where the plane lost contact.
The debris will be passed to the National Transportation Safety Committee to be investigated, he said, adding that is not confirmed if that debris belongs to the missing plane.
Flight SJY 182 lost contact 11 nautical miles north of Jakarta’s Soekarno–Hatta International Airport at an altitude of 11,000 feet while climbing to 13,000 feet, Antara reported.
The plane dropped 10,000 feet in less than a minute before disappearing from the radar, according to the global flight tracking service Flightradar24. The drop happened about four minutes after takeoff, it said.
In a statement, Sriwijaya Air said that they were “in contact with various related parties to get more detailed information” regarding the incident and that they will “immediately issue an official statement” when more information was clear.
The Transport Ministry said it is investigating and coordinating with Basarnas and the National Committee for Transport Safety.