Thursday, 29 January 2015

Fishermen discover two bodies and luggage from doomed AirAsia flight 1,000km from the search zone

Local fisherman have found two bodies and a passenger's bag 1,000km from the AirAsia QZ8501 crash zone, while the Indonesia search and rescue agency temporarily suspended the Java Sea search for missing victims.

An AirAsia statement said that local fishermen in West Sulawesi located two remains in the sea near Majene which are suspected to be that of QZ 8501 passengers.

The remains are being taken to Makassar and will be transported to Surabaya for identification purposes. The fishermen also located a bag in the proximity of the area where the bodies were found – approximately 1,000 kilometres from the aircraft’s lost contact point – that is suspected to belong to one of the passengers.

A multinational search and recovery operation found 72 bodies in the Java Sea and had hoped to find more after locating the fuselage of the plane.

But days of rough weather and poor underwater visibility hampered rescue efforts and the search was temporarily suspended. The Airbus A320 vanished from radar screens during bad weather on December 28, less than half way into a two-hour flight from Surabaya, Indonesia's second-biggest city, to Singapore. All 162 passengers and crew were killed.

On Tuesday the Indonesian National Armed Forces withdrew their personnel and assets from the search and evacuation site. But Indonesia's search and rescue agency stated that the search and recovery efforts will resume again on Saturday, allowing them a few days to consolidate all their resources.

AirAsia's statement said that the operation will be conducted for a period of seven days, after which Indonesian authorities will determine the next course of action.

Saturday's new search and recovery operations will be supported by SAR vessels, helicopters, a fixed-wing aircraft provided by AirAsia, divers, and salvage experts.

Authorities also confirmed they have recovered a total of 72 bodies of which 56 have been identified by the Disaster Victim Identification Police Department Republic of Indonesia.

Fourteen remains are still being identified and two remains have yet to arrive at Bhayangkara Hospital, Surabaya.

Thursday 29 January 2015

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