The Washington Post
Data recorder from jet crash is recovered
Indonesian navy divers searching the ocean floor on Tuesday recovered the flight data recorder from a Sriwijaya Air jet that crashed into the Java Sea with 62 people on board.
The device is expected to help investigators determine what caused the Boeing 737-500 to nosedive into the ocean in heavy rain shortly after taking off from Jakarta on Saturday.
The 26-year-old jet had been out of service for almost nine months because of flight cutbacks caused by the coronavirus pandemic, officials said. It resumed commercial flights last month.
Air Chief Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto said the plane’s other “black box,” the cockpit voice recorder, was likely to be found soon because its beacon was being emitted in the same area.
More than 3,600 rescue personnel, 13 helicopters, 54 large ships and 20 small boats are searching the area just north of Jakarta where Flight 182 crashed, and they have found parts of the plane and human remains in the water at a depth of 75 feet.
So far, the searchers have sent 74 body bags containing human remains to police identification experts.
The chairman of Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee, Soerjanto Tjahjono, ruled out a possible midair breakup after seeing the condition of the wreckage found by searchers.
He said the jet was intact until it struck the water, concentrating the debris field, rather than spreading it out over a large area as would be the case with a midair event.
Tjahjono said the plane continued to send altitude data until it descended to 250 feet above the water’s surface.