Divers recovered a flight recorder Thursday from the crashed airliner on the seafloor, a crucial development in the investigation into what caused the 2-month-old plane to plunge into Indonesian seas earlier this week, killing all 189 people on board. "Some passengers began to panic and vomit".
Two interviewed on Indonesian TV recalled details such as a odd engine sound, a smell of burnt cables, and panicked passengers crying out for God to save them as the plane rapidly lost altitude.
A passenger on the Lion Air flight before the one that crashed on Monday told Indonesian media it was like being "in a roller coaster", The Associated Press reported.
The accident has also resurrected concerns about Indonesia's poor air safety record which until recently saw the country's carriers facing years-long bans from entering European Union and U.S. airspace.
"About three to eight minutes after it took off, I felt like the plane was losing power and unable to rise", Soetanto said, per the AP.
The search-and-rescue agency plans to continue their efforts into Wednesday and search via boat, air and divers for remains and wreckage.
Human remains are being recovered in the aftermath of the crash of an Indonesian airliner into the Java Sea with 189 passengers and crew aboard and searchers now believe they may have found a large piece of the plane's fuselage.
The Flightradar website tracked the plane and showed it looping south on take-off and then heading north before its flight path ended abruptly over the Java Sea, not far from the coast. In 2014, poor maintenance and the pilots' inadequate response was blamed for the crash of an AirAsia plane crashed with the loss of 162 lives. The company is providing assistance for families by setting up a crisis center and providing a telephone number for passenger information. "We can't say how many victims there are", National Police Hospital Chief Grand Commissioner Musyafak told reporters Monday evening.
Indonesia's national police started collecting DNA samples from the victims' relatives, according to The Jakarta Post, but the process has been slow because officials have found only body parts to work with.
Earlier this year it confirmed a deal to buy 50 new Boeing narrow-body aircraft worth an estimated $6.2 billion US. Both lifted the restriction in 2016.
Its airlines were banned from flying to the United States in 2007 because they were "deficient in one or more areas, such as technical expertise, trained personnel, record-keeping, or inspection procedures", the Federal Aviation Administration said.
Boeing, just days out from its first commercial delivery of the 737 MAX in May previous year, reportedly suspended its release due to an engine issue, according to airline safety and product review site airlineratings.com. It has been expanding aggressively in Southeast Asia, a fast- growing region of more than 600 million people.
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