In­done­sian po­lice plane goes miss­ing

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

A twin-en­gine In­done­sian po­lice plane went miss­ing yes­ter­day with 15 peo­ple on board en route to the is­land of Batam, south of Sin­ga­pore, po­lice and res­cue au­thor­i­ties said, as search teams scoured the area. The plane, which took off from Pangkal Pi­nang on the is­land of Bangka at around 9.30 am is thought to have crashed be­tween the is­lands of Men­sanak and Se­bangka or Gen­tar, a po­lice re­port seen by Reuters said.

A search team re­cov­ered items ap­par­ently iden­ti­fied as be­ing from the miss­ing air­craft, in­clud­ing seats, lug­gage and doc­u­ments, the re­port said, not­ing that ac­cord­ing to the man­i­fest there were 15 peo­ple on board. Ac­cord­ing to In­done­sia’s Search and Res­cue Agency (BASAR­NAS), items be­long­ing to pas­sen­gers had also been found. “We found de­bris,” BASAR­NAS chief Bam­bang Soelistyo told Reuters, adding his team were search­ing in a 200 square nau­ti­cal mile area.

Soelistyo said it was too soon to as­sume there were no sur­vivors and that no re­mains of those aboard had been found, although there were no re­ports of sur­vivors. Up to four po­lice ves­sels were search­ing the area, he said, along with navy ves­sels. Ac­cord­ing to a state­ment from the Civil Avi­a­tion Au­thor­ity of Sin­ga­pore (CAAS), the last known radar po­si­tion of the air­craft was about 40 nau­ti­cal miles south­east of Tan­jung Pi­nang. “With clear­ance from the In­done­sian au­thor­i­ties, one Su­per Puma he­li­copter and one Fokker 50 are cur­rently on-scene sup­port­ing the In­done­sians to lo­cate the air­craft,” the state­ment said. “Two ships are await­ing clear­ance by the In­done­sian au­thor­i­ties to as­sist in the search and res­cue ef­forts.” — Reuters

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