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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Debris, Bodies Found in Suspected AirAsia Crash Site

DEVASTATING NEWS. Family members of passengers onboard the missing Malaysian air carrier AirAsia flight QZ8501 react after watching news reports showing an unidentified body floating in the Java sea, inside the crisis-centre set up at Juanda International Airport in Surabaya on December 30, 2014. 
Photo by Manan Vatsyayana/AFP


The hunt for a missing AirAsia passenger plane appeared at an end on Tuesday, December 30, as wreckage and bodies were spotted at sea off Indonesia, prompting raw scenes of emotion from sobbing relatives of the 162 people aboard.

The Airbus A320-200 disappeared en route from Indonesia's second largest city Surabaya to Singapore during a storm early Sunday.

All indications now are that it crashed in the Java Sea southwest of the island of Borneo, with debris including an exit door, a blue suitcase and bodies retrieved from the area.

An air force plane saw a "shadow" on the seabed believed to be that of the missing Flight QZ8501, National Search and Rescue Agency chief Bambang Soelistyo told a news conference in Jakarta.

Relatives of the missing hugged each other and burst into tears in Surabaya as they watched footage of one body floating in the sea on a television feed of Soelistyo's press conference.

Later Tuesday the search chief said just three bodies had been recovered so far, after another official said 40 had been found.

Navy spokesman Manahan Simorangkir told Agence France-Presse earlier that according to naval radio a warship had recovered more than 40 bodies from the sea. But he later said that report was a miscommunication by his staff.

'I cannot bring him back to life'

AirAsia's flamboyant chief executive Tony Fernandes expressed his grief over the first fatal incident to hit the region's biggest budget airline.

"My heart is filled with sadness for all the families involved in QZ 8501," Fernandes said on Twitter, before rushing to Surabaya.

Initial news of the debris dimmed the faint hopes of relatives.

"If that news is true, what can I do? I cannot bring him back to life," said Dwijanto, 60, whose son was on the plane along with five colleagues.

"My heart will be totally crushed if it's true. I will lose a son," he said.

PLANE DEBRIS? This aerial view taken from an Indonesian search and rescue aircraft over the Java Sea shows floating debris spotted in the same area as other items being investigated by Indonesian authorities as possible objects from missing AirAsia flight QZ8501 on December 30, 2014. 
Photo by Bay Ismoyo/AFP

Search chief Soelistyo said all efforts were now being concentrated on the location where the "shadow" and debris had been found, around 160 kilometres (100 miles) southwest of the town of Pangkalan Bun in Central Kalimantan on Borneo island.

The town has the nearest airstrip and is not far from the plane's last known position.

President Joko Widodo praised the search teams and said three warships were heading to the location.

"Tomorrow there will be a massive search by the ships and helicopters," he said after flying over the area and visiting Pangkalan Bun.

"I would like to thank our close friends, the countries who have helped the search from Singapore, Malaysia and Australia," he said.

"And for the families of the passengers and crew, I also feel the loss from this tragedy and we all pray for the families to be given fortitude and strength to face this tragedy," he said at a brief appearance in Surabaya between meeting relatives.

Items resembling an emergency slide, plane door and other objects were spotted during an aerial search on December 30 for the missing AirAsia plane, according to information from the flight on which AFP was aboard. 
Photo by Bay Ismoyo/AFP

Indonesian officials had already been preparing relatives for the worst, with Soelistyo saying Monday it was likely the plane was at "the bottom of the sea", based on its estimated position.

The aircraft lost contact early on Sunday about 40 minutes after takeoff, after the crew requested a change of flight plan due to stormy weather, in the third crisis for a Malaysian carrier this year.

In his last communication, the pilot said he wanted to avoid a menacing storm system. Then all contact was lost.

Before take-off the pilot had asked for permission to fly at a higher level to avoid the storm but his request was not approved due to heavy traffic on the popular route, according to AirNav, Indonesia's flight navigation service.

In his final communication, the pilot asked to alter his course and repeated his original request to ascend to avoid the bad weather.

"The pilot requested to air traffic controllers to deviate to the left side due to bad weather, which was immediately approved," AirNav safety director Wisnu Darjono told Agence France-Presse.

"After a few seconds the pilot requested to ascend from 32,000 to 38,000 feet but could not be immediately approved as some planes were flying above it at that time," he said.

That was the last communication.

"Two to three minutes later when the controller was going to give a clearance to a level of 34,000, the plane did not give any response," Darjono said.

Photo by Bay Ismoyo/AFP

International response

China, which had 152 citizens on board Malaysia Airlines MH370 which vanished in March, offered to send a frigate and military aircraft to help with the search.

The missing plane was operated by AirAsia Indonesia, a unit of Malaysian-based AirAsia which dominates Southeast Asia's booming low-cost airline market. Of the 162 passengers and crew, 155 were Indonesian.

The crash comes at the end of a disastrous year for Malaysian aviation.

Flight MH370 disappeared while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 passengers and crew, and in July another Malaysia Airlines flight -- MH17 -- was shot down over unrest-hit Ukraine, killing all 298 on board. 


  1. Ang malas ng airAsia ngayong taon na to.. :(

    1. sabihin mo malas SEAsian airline carriers this year.

  2. Konsuelo na lang, at least may katawan pang malilibing nga kaanak neto sa airasia unlike sa dlawang tragedies sa malaysianair..sana lang din tlga lahat makita yung mga nawawala pa.

    1. Haller! Me nauwing mga bodies s MH17. Magbasa kasi ng news paminsan minsan

    2. Kailangan talaga makipagaway anon 9.05?!

  3. Naku!..I have the same BAD experience with AirAsia!..buti na lng at malapit na kmi sa airport nun!..nasabi q sa self q..last na talaga yun!..never ever!..hmph!

    1. Epal ka naman makapang generalize. It was an accident. Chosera ka di ka nila kawalan.

  4. My partner was aboard the AirAsia plane that overshoot at Kalibo Airport. I am very disappointed on how they handled the situation! Its not true that accommodations were provided, he's now sleeping at the airport with his buddies! This is irresponsible and totally unacceptable!

    1. Naku! Sakit ulo nanaman ang caap nyan, una cebupac tapos airasia naman

    2. I also had a bad experience with Air Asia. We landed on the wrong airport terminal and never explained nor apologized for the inconvenience that it caused us. That was my first and last trip with them. Back to the topic, MALAYSIAN AVIATION COMPANIES MUST BE HIDING SOMETHING. They always lose track if their airplanes imagine, their machinery is more advanced compared to other SEA countries. After MH370, i never want to fly with any Malaysian air companies. I'd rather take PAL kahit madelay ako, at least safe ako.

  5. Nabalitaan ko nngyri s klo. Kapg 5j un, naku cgurado media nnmn. Batikos nmmn. Pero bkt kpg ibang airline walang batikos?

    1. Ang alam ko may news block out sa mga incidents ng PAL. Hindi pinapalabas sa press/media.

  6. Last April me and my suitor decided to go to Cebu since his birthday is near so pre-birthday nya and libot narin. We booked hotel and airfare together kasi ayaw na namin mag haunt pa ng hotels atleast may deals na dun. We chose the earliest flight so we're both excited since 1st time namin both and maganda napili naming hotel. So nag iisip na kami sa gagawin namin dun then days before kami umalis we received an email from airasia minove nila yung flight namin from morning to evening! Wala man lang explanation why do they have to do that inemail at tinawagan namin sila yet wala silang masagot so sabi namin last na namin yun since nag leave lang kami ng 1 day to allot sana sa libot since 2 days ang off namin so counted na nanghinayang lang kami then di na namin mamove yung flight namin para maenjoy sana ang cebu since promo lang sya. Sabi namin next time cebupac or pal nalang kami though may kamahalan.

  7. what a fking way to die. so sad.

  8. I read in BBC na ung isang passenger first time na makasakay sa airplane overseas. bumili pa ng new shoes new pants at new na damit. naluha na lang ako after nun

  9. kawawa naman yung mga tao. =,( rip



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