Sriwijaya Air plane did not explode before hitting sea: KNKT

Jakarta The National Committee for Transportation Safety (KNKT) has postulated that the Sriwijaya Air flight SJ 182 did not explode mid-air before plunging into the sea.

According to other data secured by the KNKT and Indonesian warship KRL Rigel, parts of the plane wreckage dispersed around the crash site are 100 meters wide and 300-400 meters long, KNKT Chief Soerjanto Tjahjono noted in an official statement released on Tuesday.

"The extent of the spread of debris is consistent with the assumption that the plane did not explode before it struck sea," Tjahjono pointed out.

The KNKT chief further revealed that the SAR team had captured a signal from the locator beacon during its search for the plane's flight data recorder (FDR) and cockpit voice recorder (CVR).

"From the signal, (the diving team) has measured (the suspected) location, covering an area of about 90 square meters using a triangulation (method). Since this morning, the diving team has attempted to find the suspected location," he stated.

The investigation is underway, and the team will continue to make efforts to locate the black box, accrue data of the plane and its crew, interview several relevant parties, and conduct other activities, he remarked.

On Sunday, the team discovered the location where the plane crashed in the waters between Laki Island and Lancang Island in Seribu Islands off North Jakarta's coast.

In addition, KRI Rigel detected a signal believed to have originated from the black box.

Tjahjono remarked that the KNKT team, aboard research vessel Baruna Jaya IV, had reached in proximity to KRI Rigel, which had been at the location where the plane crashed to retrieve the black box using ping locaters.

The KNKT has readied three ping locators and a device at Baruna Jaya IV to detect any object under the sea.

The Transportation Ministry earlier confirmed that airport authorities had lost contact with Sriwijaya Air flight number SJ-182, serving the Jakarta-Pontianak route, at approximately 2:40 p.m. local time on last Saturday.

According to the ministry, the last contact was made with the Boeing 737-500 jet, bearing registration number PK CLC, at 11 nautical miles north of the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport after passing an altitude of 11 thousand feet and while ascending to 13 thousand feet.

The plane took off from the Soekarno-Hatta Airport at 2:40 p.m. local time last Saturday and was scheduled to land at the Supadio Airport in Pontianak, West Kalimantan, at 3:50 p.m. local time.

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

Source: Antara News

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