An AirAsia plane with 161 people aboard lost contact with ground control today after takeoff from Indonesia on the way to Singapore, and search and rescue operations were underway.
The plane lost communication with Jakarta’s air traffic control at 7:24 a.m., about an hour before it was scheduled to land in Singapore, the Singapore Civil Aviation Authority said in a statement. The contact was lost about 42 minutes after takeoff from Indonesia’s Surabaya airport.
AirAsia said in a statement that the plane was an Airbus A320-200 and that search and rescue operations were in progress.
The plane had six crew and 155 passengers, including 16 children and one infant, the general manager of Surabaya’s Juanda airport, Trikora Raharjo, told The Associated Press.
There were six foreigners — three South Koreans including an infant and one each from Singapore, British and Malaysia, said Raharjo. The rest were Indonesians, he said.
The plane lost contact when it was believed to be over the Java Sea between Kalimantan and Java islands, Mustofa said.
These disappearing planes are suicide pilots. They know exactly when and where to go down, with small chance of recovery.
He said the weather in the area was cloudy.
The Singapore aviation authority said it was informed about the missing plane by Jakarta ground control about half an hour after the contact was lost.