A relative of passengers prays as she and others wait for news on a Lion Air plane that crashed off Java Island at Depati Amir Airport in Pangkal Pinang, Indonesia, on Monday. Indonesia disaster agency says that the Lion Air Boeing 737 MAX 8 plane crashed into sea shortly after it left Indonesia’s capital Monday morning. (AP Photo/Hadi Sutrisno)

A relative of passengers prays as she and others wait for news on a Lion Air plane that crashed off Java Island at Depati Amir Airport in Pangkal Pinang, Indonesia, on Monday. Indonesia disaster agency says that the Lion Air Boeing 737 MAX 8 plane crashed into sea shortly after it left Indonesia’s capital Monday morning. (AP Photo/Hadi Sutrisno)

Indonesia Lion Air flight with 189 on board crashes into sea

The Boeing 737-MAX 8 had departed Jakarta about 6.20 a.m. local time for Pangkal Pinang.

Associated Press

JAKARTA, Indonesia — A Lion Air flight with 189 people on board crashed into the sea just minutes after taking off from Indonesia’s capital on Monday in a blow to the country’s aviation safety record after the lifting of bans on its airlines by the European Union and U.S.

Indonesia’s disaster agency posted photos online of a crushed smartphone, books, bags and parts of the aircraft fuselage that had been collected by search and rescue vessels that have converged on the area.

Lion Air said the aircraft, on a 1-hour-and-10-minute flight to Pangkal Pinang on an island chain off Sumatra, was carrying 181 passengers, including one child and two babies, and eight crew members.

Indonesian TV broadcast pictures of a fuel slick and debris field.

The National Search and Rescue Agency said the flight ended in waters off West Java that are 30 to 35 meters (98 to 115 feet) deep.

The agency’s chief Muhammad Syaugi told a news conference that divers are trying to locate the wreckage of the plane, which according to aviation website Flightradar24 was brand-new and delivered to Lion Air in August.

Indonesia’s Transport Ministry said the Boeing 737 MAX 8 plane, which took off from Jakarta about 6.20 a.m., crashed just 13 minutes later. Data from aircraft tracking website FlightAware showed it had reached an altitude of only 5,200 feet.

Indonesian TV showed dozens of people waiting anxiously outside the Pangkal Pinang airport and officials bringing out plastic chairs. The transport ministry said crisis centers have been set up Pangkal Pinang’s airport and Jakarta’s Soekarno Hatta airport.

The crash is the worst airline disaster in Indonesia since an AirAsia flight from Surabaya to Singapore plunged into the sea in December 2014, killing all 162 on board.

A report to the Jakarta Search and Rescue Office cited the crew of a tug boat which had reported seeing a Lion Air flight falling from the sky.

A telegram from the National Search and Rescue Agency to the air force has requested assistance with the search.

Lion Air is one of Indonesia’s youngest and biggest airlines, flying to dozens of domestic and international destinations.

In 2013, one of its Boeing 737-800 jets missed the runway while landing on the resort island of Bali, crashing into the sea without causing any fatalities among the 108 people on board.

Indonesian airlines were barred in 2007 were flying to Europe because of safety concerns, though several were allowed to resume services in the following decade. The ban was completely lifted in June this year. The U.S. lifted a decadelong ban in 2016.

Talk to us

More in Nation-World

FILE - In this April 15, 2019, file photo, a vendor makes change for a marijuana customer at a cannabis marketplace in Los Angeles. An unwelcome trend is emerging in California, as the nation's most populous state enters its fifth year of broad legal marijuana sales. Industry experts say a growing number of license holders are secretly operating in the illegal market — working both sides of the economy to make ends meet. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)
In California pot market, a hazy line between legal and not

Industry insiders say the practice of working simultaneously in the legal and illicit markets is a financial reality.

19 dead, including 9 children, in NYC apartment fire

More than five dozen people were injured and 13 people were still in critical condition in the hospital.

15 dead after Russian skydiver plane crashes

The L-410, a Czech-made twin-engine turboprop, crashed near the town of Menzelinsk.

FILE - In this March 29, 2018, file photo, the logo for Facebook appears on screens at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York's Times Square. Facebook prematurely turned off safeguards designed to thwart misinformation and rabble rousing after Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump in the 2020 elections in a moneymaking move that a company whistleblower alleges contributed to the deadly Jan. 6, 2021, invasion of the U.S. Capitol. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram in hourslong worldwide outage

Something made the social media giant’s routes inaccessable to the rest of the internet.

Oil washed up on Huntington Beach, Calif., on Sunday, Oct. 3, 2021. A major oil spill off the coast of Southern California fouled popular beaches and killed wildlife while crews scrambled Sunday to contain the crude before it spread further into protected wetlands. (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)
Crews race to limited damage from California oil spill

At least 126,000 gallons (572,807 liters) of oil spilled into the waters off Orange County.

YouTube will remove videos with misinformation about any vaccine

The ban covers claims vaccines are dangerous or lead to chronic health outcomes such as autism.

File - In this Sept. 24, 2014 file photo, smoke hangs over Reno-Tahoe International Airport as a plane takes off in Reno, Nev. A shortage of jet fuel, coupled with supply chain issues and an urgent demand from firefighting aircraft, continues to cause problems at airports around the West. In Nevada, state and federal lawmakers said they are investigating a possible shortage of jet fuel that could delay cargo delivery and passenger travel at Reno-Tahoe International Airport in the coming days. (AP Photo/Martha Irvine, File)
Airports in the US West dealing with shortage of jet fuel

Supply chain issues and an urgent demand from firefighting aircraft have combined to cause problems.

FILE - This June 8, 2021, file photo shows the Supreme Court in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, FIle)
High court sides with former athletes in dispute with NCAA

The case doesn’t decide whether students can be paid salaries.

Israel's new prime minister Naftali Bennett raises his hand during a Knesset session in Jerusalem Sunday, June 13, 2021. Israel's parliament has voted in favor of a new coalition government, formally ending Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's historic 12-year rule. Naftali Bennett, a former ally of Netanyahu became the new prime minister (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
Israel swears in new coalition, ending Netanyahu’s long rule

Naftali Bennett, a former ally of Netanyahu turned rival, became prime minister after a 60-59 vote.

Many experts say to keep masks on, contrary to CDC ruling

Experts are divided, but many have said it’s better to be on the safe side for now.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, speaks during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions hearing to examine an update from Federal officials on efforts to combat COVID-19, Tuesday, May 11, 2021 on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Jim Lo Scalzo/Pool via AP)
Fauci says pandemic exposed ‘undeniable effects of racism’

During the Emory University graduation speech, he said correcting societal wrongs will take decades.

FILE - In this Feb. 19, 2021, file photo, firearms are displayed at a gun shop in Salem, Ore. The first legal test of whether a wave of U.S. counties can legally declare themselves "Second Amendment Sanctuaries," and refuse to enforce certain gun laws is playing out in a rural Oregon logging county. The measure Columbia County voters narrowly approved last year bans local officials from enforcing most federal and state gun laws, which includes things like universal background checks or any prohibition on carrying guns. (AP Photo/Andrew Selsky, File)
Second Amendment sanctuaries facing 1st court test in Oregon

Second Amendment sanctuary resolutions were adopted by some 1,200 local governments around the U.S.