Jetliner Crashes Into Sea


Linnea Fry, Writer


A passenger jet carrying 62 people, crashed into the Java Sea mere minutes after its takeoff from the Indonesian capital of Jakarta on January 9th. Indonesian officials say the incident is bringing unwanted attention to the string of unfortunate aviation disasters.


The loss of Sriwijaya Air flight SJ 182 is the latest in a string of tragedies to have hit Indonesian aviation, which has suffered 2,353 deaths since 1945. Of the 62 people on board, 50 of them were passengers, all are presumed dead -including 10 children.


Indonesia’s Transportation Ministry said that the last contact with the plane, Sriwijaya AirFlight 182, was at 2:40 p.m. local time. The plane was bound for the city of Pontianak on the island of Borneo. Four minutes after taking off during a heavy monsoon season rain, following a bad weather delay, the 26-year-old plane lost more than 10,000 feet in altitude in less than 60 seconds, according to Flightradar24, the flight-tracking service. According to the CEO of Sriwijaya Airlines, the plane was in good condition before it took off.


After days of looking, divers found one of two black boxes on board. Black Boxes are the flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder, they store data about planes. They can provide vital information in air accident investigations. While the cause of the crash is still unknown, experts are working to find the reason the plane took a nosedive into the sea. The black box found was the flight data recorder. They are responsible for processing a flight’s information; including pressure, airspeed and altitude. The second black box, the cockpit voice recorder, has not yet been found.


Head of the National Transport Safety Committee, Soerjanto Tjahjono, said that authorities would need two to five days to read the recovered black box’s data. “We are expecting that through this investigation we can unfold the mystery of this accident,” he said.


The plane crash has many aspects of it that are unknown, though experts are hoping to discover as much as possible to make sure that this remains an isolated incident.