AirAsia Debris Identified off the Coast of Borneo

By Jamie Condliffe on at

The ongoing search attempt to discover AirAsia Flight 8501 is edging closer to a discovery. Indonesian officials have announced that they've discovered aeroplane debris in waters near the island of Borneo—and authorities have now confirmed that the debris is from AirAsia Flight 8501. Reports suggest that around 40 bodies have now been retrieved from the site.

Prior to confirming that the debris was Flight 8501, Bambang Soelistyo, head of Indonesia's search-and-rescue efforts, told the media that in the areas beneath the debris there was also a shadow that looks like an aircraft. 21 divers were deployed at the site to investigate further.

The debris lies in three locations, around 100 miles southwest of Pangkalan Bun, a city on the island of Borneo.

The jet disappeared on Sunday morning, carrying 162 people, as it approached bad weather over the Java Sea. The pilot requested to deviate from its flight path due to cloud, but air traffic control lost contact with the aeroplane just moments later. It didn't send a distress signal.

More than 20 aircraft are now aiding the search, and the US destroyer, USS Sampson, is now en route to help, as well. With some luck, [WSJ]