Marine Corps SAR fields divers to help search for Sriwijaya plane

Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Search and Rescue (SAR) Team of the Marine Amphibious Recon Battalion (Yontaifib) of the Indonesian Navy has fielded 14 divers to help search for passengers and debris of Sriwijaya plane that crashed in the waters of Seribu Islands on Saturday.

The 14 divers are divided into two teams, Commander of the SAR Team First Lieutenant Sofi Rahmadani Ilmi said aboard the Indonesian Warship KRI Teluk Gilimanuk-531 on Sunday..

The divers are also equipped with two inflatable boats and diving instruments to search for debris of the ill-fated plane and victims of the plane crash .

In addition, the Jalamangkara Detachment of the Navy's Marine Corps also deployed a team comprising 17 personnel equipped with two sea riders and two inflatable boats.

"May the search be successful," Commander of Jalamangkara Detachment team Marine Captain Haryono said.

The Navy has also deployed 10 ships to the location believed to be the crash site between Laki Island and Lancang Island in Seribu Islands.

The Indonesian Air Force (TNI AU) has also readied two helicopters and a plane to help search for a Sriwijaya Air plane that lost contact with air traffic controllers on Saturday.

Air Force spokesman First Marshal Indan Gilang B said, in a written statement released on Saturday the two helicopters are Super Puma NAS-332 from Air Squadron 6 and EC-725 Caracal from Air Squadron 8 at Atang Sendjaja Airbase in Bogor, West Java.

The planes are maritime spy fixed wing Boeing 737 from Air Squadron 5 at Sultan Hasanudin Airbase in Makassar and CN-295 of Air Squadron 2 from Halim Perdanakusuma Airbase in Jakarta.

Sriwijaya Air flight number SJY 182 took off from Soekarno-Hatta Airport at 2.40 p.m. local time on Saturday, and was scheduled to land at Supadio Airport in Pontianak, West Kalimantan, at 3:50 p.m.

Based on the manifest, the plane carried 50 passengers and 12 crew members.

The National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) and the National Committee for Transportation Safety (KNKT) are in the process of trying to find the whereabouts of the ill-fated plane.

The Ministry of Transportation has confirmed that airport authorities lost contact with Sriwijaya Air flight number SJY 182 serving the Jakarta-Pontianak route at approximately 2:40 p.m.

According to the ministry, tthe Boeing 737-500 jet, registration number PK CLC, had its last contact at a position 11 nautical miles north of Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, Tangerang, in suburban Jakarta, after passing an altitude of 11,000 feet and while rising to 13,000 feet.

Source: Antara News

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