AirAsia flight with 162 people missing

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AirAsia flight with 162 people missing

Flight QZ8501 loses contact with air traffic control after takeoff from Indonesia on the way to Singapore.


An AirAsia flight from Surabaya, Indonesia to Singapore has lost contact with air traffic control after take-off, the airline has said, as search and rescue operations get under way.

AirAsia, a regional low-cost carrier with presence in several Southeast Asian countries, said in a statement that the missing plane was an Airbus A320-200 with 62 people on board, and was supposed to land in Singapore at 8:30am local time on Sunday.

Flight QZ8501 had 162 passengers on board: 157 Indonesians, one Singaporean national, one Malaysian and three Koreans, the airline said in a statement. Sixteen children and one infant were aong the passengers.

"At the present time we unfortunately have no further information regarding the status of the passengers and crew members on board, but we will keep all parties informed as more information becomes available," the airline said in a statement on Facebook.

The aircraft requested for a different route due to poor weather before communication was lost over Indonesian air space.

AirAsia said serach and rescue operations were in progress and that it was "cooperating fully and assisting the rescue service".

It said it had established an emergency call centre for family or friends of those who were travelling on the aircraft.

The aircraft lost contact with the Jakarta air traffic control tower at 6:17am (2317 GMT), Hadi Mustofa, Indonesia's Transport Ministry official, told reporters.

The flight had been due in Singapore at 8:30 am (0030 GMT). The Singapore airport said on its website the status of the flight was "delayed".

The incident comes at the end of a disastrous year for Malaysia's airlines.

National flag carrier Malaysia Airlines lost two aircraft this year.

Its flight MH370 went missing on March 8 on a trip from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 passengers and crew on board.

On July 17, Flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.

AirAsia flight with 162 people missing - Asia-Pacific - Al Jazeera English
 
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Somewhere the Malaysian Airlines Executives are expressing a sigh of relief.
 
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And once again, so many innocent lives are affected by this. It's just mind boggling how technology could trace everything now, even a phone at the bottom of the ocean, but they can all still lose a plane. I don't know about this much, but something is telling me that there is more to it than just a simple accident.
 
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