An Indonesian Trigana Air passenger plane with 54 people on board went missing in Papua region. The flight took off from the regional capital Jayapura for Oksibil in the south at 2:22pm local time, but contract was lost.
The ATR42-300 twin turboprop plane was carrying 44 adult passengers, 5 children and infants, and 5 crew. It took off from Sentani airport in Jayapura, but lost contact with ground control half an hour later at 2:55pm.
The flight was scheduled to land in Oksibil at about 3:16pm, officials said.
Indonesia’s director general of air transportation, Suprasetyo, said the plane has been found in the Oktabe district of Papua province. Details are still being verified, Suprasetyo said, but billagers from Okbape, around 25km from Oksibil airport, said they saw a low flying aircraft crash into a mountain, according to local police.
6 aircraft are being sent to help with the search, according to Raymond Konstantin, a local officer with the nation’s search and rescue agency. The search, which involved forested and mountainous terrain, was called off Sunday (16th August) because weather and lack of light made an already dangerous landscape more problematic.
Transport ministry spokesman Julius Barata, who confirmed the disappearance, said that there was no indication that a distress call was made from the plane, but unconfirmed reports suggest weather was the likely cause.
Rescue teams will continue their search at first light on Monday (17th August) morning.
UPDATE (18th August, 2pm):
Indonesian officials say the black box has been recovered from passenger plane that crashed in a remote area of the country, killing all 54 people on board.
The plane went missing 2 days ago but rescuers only reached the crash site on Tuesday (18th August) because of delays caused by the weather and rough terrain. They said that the plane was destroyed in the crash and there was no chance of any survivors.