A passenger aircraft with more than 50 people onboard has lost contact from air traffic control shortly after take-off from Soekarno–Hatta International Airport, the company headquarters and the capital airport of Indonesia.

Sriwijaya Air 737500 1 - Travel Radar - Aviation News
The aircraft involved in the crash: 26 year old 737-500 (Reg: -CLC) | © Wikimedia Commons

What we know so far…

Flight tracking website, Flightradar24, shows the aircraft had lost more than 3,000m (approximately 10,000ft) during the climb, via the assigned Standard Instrument Departure (SID) route. The aircraft was on track when it started to loose altitude rapidly.

Spokesperson, Adita Irawati, for the Indonesian Transportation Ministry said in a statement:

“The missing plane is currently under investigation and under coordination with the National Search and Rescue Agency and the National Transportation Safety Committee,”

SJ182 Track - Travel Radar - Aviation NewsSJ182 SID - Travel Radar - Aviation News

About the Flight

The flight was operating as Flight Number SJ182, a Boeing 737-500 (Registration: PK-CLC – pictured above) took off at 1400 local time (0700 UTC) at Jakarta and followed the climb path, enroute to Pontianak in the West Kalimantan province, officials said. The transport ministry said an emergency response plan has been activated, and some potential debris has also been found from the accident site – though this is yet to be verified.

The 26 years old aircraft was served to Continental Air Lines and United Airlines in the USA. after the first flight in 1994 and handed over to the Sriwijaya Air( Reg: PK-CLC) in 2012 for the booming domestic market in the country.

Islanders nearby released videos to the media, showing wreckage, cables and fragments of jeans being pulled from the Java Sea. Reports of the aircraft crashing into the ocean are not yet confirmed

Was weather a possible cause?

A Metrological Report (METAR) has been released at the time of the crash:

SJ182 METAR 1 2 - Travel Radar - Aviation News

From this, analysts have noticed remarks of a major Thunderstorms, precipitation and cumulonimbus clouds being reported at 1600ft in the vicinity of the airport. The visibility were identified as 4000 metres due to the adverse weather. These are not ideal conditions for flight.

Sriwijaya Air Boeing 737 200 MRD 1 - Travel Radar - Aviation News
The carrier has a mixed fleet of aircraft including several variants of the 737 – including the older 737-200 variant pictured above | © Wikimedia Commons

About Sriwijaya Air

Sriwijaya Air is an Indonesian airline based in Jakarta with its headquarters located at Soekarno-Hatta International Airport Area in Tangerang, near Jakarta.

Sriwijaya Air is the country’s third largest carrier, operating a fleet of narrow-body aircraft (mostly Boeing), and offers flights to various Indonesian destinations and a few international destinations.

The team will closely monitor the accident and update when further information is available. 

Editorial Disclaimer: The original article showed a Sriwijaya Air 737-200 aircraft: We apologise for the mistake and have since rectified it to a 737-500 aircraft. When the news first came in, we were unsure of the specific type involved and used a default stock-library photo.

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