Rescuers locate fuselage of missing Boeing plane in Java Sea

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SINGAPORE, October 31. /TASS/. Rescuers have established a presumable location of fuselage of the Lion Air Boeing 737 Max 8 that crashed in the Java Sea on October 29, Commander of the Indonesian National Armed Forces Air Chief Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto said on Wednesday.

“This morning we received a report about the discovery of a bright spot, which is believed to be the plane’s fuselage,” the Detik news portal quoted the official as saying. “Rescuers need time to confirm the coordinates that were received.”

Early in the day, approximately 800 rescuers, police officers, servicemen and volunteers resumed active search for the missing aircraft. The main goal is to locate the plane’s fuselage, where the bulk of the bodies is expected to be found, as well as its black boxes.

“We hope we can find the plane’s main fuselage – everything on the surface of the water has been collected,” said Indonesia’s National Search and Rescue Agency head Muhammad Syaugi. “We are still searching for the fuselage. Usually the black box would not be far.”

The search is conducted with the help of high-precision sonar equipment, installed on vessels that arrived to the search zone.

Accident investigator Ony Suryo Wibowo told reporters on Wednesday that the search effort is hampered by a strong underwater current and poor visibility.

On Monday, October 29, Lion Air Flight JT610 flew from Jakarta to Pangkal Pinang (capital of the province of the Bangka Belitung Islands). The Boeing 737 crashed into the Java Sea 13 minutes after taking off. A total of 189 people were onboard. Although the authorities have not yet formally declared everyone on board dead, it is believed that there were no survivors.

By late Tuesday, rescuers delivered over 30 bags with body fragments and personal items to the port city of Karawang in West Java.

Lion Air is Indonesia’s largest low-cost airline and the second biggest low-cost carrier in South-East Asia. Currently, it accounts for almost 40% of Indonesia’s air travel market. Last year, the company transported about 51 million passengers. The company operates a fleet of almost 300 planes, most of them Boeing aircraft.

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