INDONESIA AVIATION CHIEF: We Found Debris From The Missing AirAsia Plane

Airasia flight
Indonesia’s vice-president Jusuf Kalla monitors progress in the search for AirAsia Flight QZ8501 during a visit to the National Search and Rescue Agency in Jakarta December 28, 2014. Antara Foto/Reuters

Indonesian officials have reportedly said that debris spotted in the sea by search crews belongs to the missing AirAsia flight QZ8501, according to SkyNews.

Crews who have been searching for the missing plane spotted items that look like an emergency slide and plane door, Indonesian officials told media.

CCTV News reports that crews have also spotted bodies and luggage in the search zone.

Family members are reportedly being informed and will meet with officials at the search and rescue headquarters, according to CNN.

Indonesia’s search and rescue chief reportedly told local media that several bodies and some debris have been recovered so far from the search site. Divers are being dispatched to the site now.

Crews reportedly also spotted what they believe to be the shadow of the plane’s body underwater, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

This marks the third day of the search for the missing jet, which disappeared on a flight from Indonesia to Singapore on Sunday as it was approaching a string of bad weather.

The area where the debris was spotted is close to where the plane disappeared:

“We spotted about 10 big objects and many more small white-coloured objects which we could not photograph,” Indonesian air force official Agus Dwi Putranto said during a press conference on Tuesday, according to AFP. “The position is 10 kilometres from the location the plane was last captured by radar.”

An AFP photographer on the plane with the search crew said he saw objects resembling a life raft, life vest, and long orange tube.

AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes released this statement on Twitter: “My heart is filled with sadness for all the families involved in QZ 8501. On behalf of AirAsia my condolences to all. Words cannot express how sorry I am.”

AirAsia plane
An Indonesia AirAsia Airbus A320-200 passenger prepares to land at Sukarno-Hatta airport in Tangerang on the outskirts of Jakarta January 30, 2013. REUTERS/Enny Nuraheni

The AirAsia crew lost contact with air traffic control at about 6:17 a.m. local time Sunday, about halfway through the flight. The plane was initially thought to have crashed near the Indonesian island of Belitung, which is near the plane’s last known location.

The missing plane carried 155 Indonesians, along with three people from South Korea and one each from Singapore, Britain, Malaysia, and France. The passengers included 16 children and one infant.

Here’s some of the debris crews found in the water: