A passenger plane carrying 189 people crashed into the sea Monday shortly after taking off from Jakarta, Indonesia. All passengers and crew are feared dead.
Authorities launched a rescue mission to look for survivors of Lion Air Flight JT610, but none have been found. Authorities say they do not expect to find any survivors.
According to CNN, rescuers have pulled six bodies from the water. Debris from the airplane and items belonging to the passengers have also begun to surface. Among the passengers were 20 employees from Indonesia’s Finance Ministry, who were on their way back from a holiday, as well as one child and two infants.
Just a few minutes after takeoff around 6:20 a.m., the pilot requested to return to the airport and was cleared. But the plane never turned around, and 13 minutes after takeoff, just after losing contact, the plane plummeted 3,000 feet into the sea.
There was no bad weather to blame for the accident, and the pilot and copilot were experienced. The Lion Air Group’s chief executive said at a news conference that the plane, a Boeing 737 Max 8 that had been in operation since August, had experienced a technical issue on a flight the night before but had been fixed and cleared for use, according to the BBC. Lion Air is Indonesia’s largest budget airline. It has had several accidents since it was established in 1999, but none have been fatal.
Divers, along with sonar scanners from naval ships, are searching for the wreckage underwater. Authorities hope that by locating the black box, they can shed some light onto the cause of the crash.