Indonesia has suspended any further attempts by its military in the recovery effort for the remaining 92 victims missing believed to be still inside the submerged AirAsia flight 8501 Airbus A320-200 airliner.
Government officials also halted efforts from their armed forces to raise the fuselage from the Java Sea after encountering continuously poor weather conditions to complete the submerged airliner recovery.
This surprise revelation comes after four days of failed attempts by the multinational deep sea recovery teams to bring AirAsia flight 8501’s submerged Airbus A320-200 fuselage and cockpit wreckage to the surface of the Java Sea.
Deep seabed currents, surface waves as high as 16 feet, and poor visibility hampered divers in their quest to balloon lift the fuselage and what appears to be the plane’s cockpit from the seabed at a depth of 30 meters (100 feet).
Experts are concerned that if the Airbus A320-200 fuselage and cockpit wreckage are left on the seafloor, the investigation into the crash could be compromised by the lack of physical evidence from the actual airliner to learn about how to avoid such crashes in the future.
Military spokesman Fuad Basya said to French news service, AFP reporters that the plane’s body was “destroyed.”
“It was soaked in seawater for a while so when we lifted it, it was torn apart,” he said. “We can no longer find any more bodies.”
“They could be on the seabed, or have been swept away by waves and currents,” SB Supriyadi, a search and rescue agency official who has been coordinating the hunt, told AFP.
While Mr. Supriyadi suggested it would be tough to find any more victims, agency chief Bambang Soelistyo said he was “optimistic.”
“Within one week we will evaluate [our search] depending on the result,” Mr. Soelistyo told reporters.
“If we can find one or two more bodies, that means we have the opportunity to prolong the operation.”
“The search operation will continue. I repeat, the search and rescue operation is still on,” Bambang Soelistyo, chief of the rescue agency, known as BASARNAS, told reporters Wednesday morning, according to NBC News.
He said “the words painted on the side of the wreckage confirmed the plane was flight QZ8501.”
“The MV Swift Rescue has located the fuselage of the AirAsia plane in the Java Sea, two kilometers away from the tail. Mr Ng said on Facebook, “Singapore had informed the Indonesian search and rescue agency so that recovery operations could begin.”
He said images taken by a remotely operated vehicle, which he posted as well, showed part of the wing and words on the fuselage that matched with those on the AirAsia flight, BBC News reports.
The AirAsia slogan “Now everyone can fly” could be seen on the wreckage in the pictures.
Expert divers say that the deep sea savage and recovery of Air Asia 8501 fuselage wreckage and remaining victims believe trapped inside the Java Sea could take several weeks even up to months to fully complete, due to the current murky waters on the seabed.
Rear Admiral Widodo, commander of the Indonesian Navy’s western fleet, told journalists aboard the naval ship Banda Aceh, which is involved in the search operations off the southern coast of Borneo Island, said “There are many bodies in the fuselage,” declining to give an estimate, The New York Times reported last week.
“The operation has been ongoing for 30 days so the joint team has been pulled out,” said Rear Admiral Widodo.
“We apologize to the families of the victims. We tried our best to look for the missing victims.”
There are new reports emerging that the Indonesian military divers may allegedly be coming down with the Bendz (a decompression sickness as a result of build up of carbon dioxide gas in the blood stream), and they are being supposedly placed inside recompression chambers in hospitals in Jakarta. This may allegedly be the immediate cause for the sudden Indonesian military pull out of the AirAsia flight 8501 Airbus A320-200 recovery effort.
Indonesia’s National Search and Rescue Agency said it may press on with the search for the remaining 92 victims missing.
But the agency’s efforts will be hampered by the loss of the military’s large vessels and heavy recovery equipment.
Yahoo! News confirms: “Some divers were suffering from decompression sickness, which typically affects those who have ascended too quickly from great depth, or have not taken long enough breaks between dives,” the agency said.
Tatang Zaenuddin, the National Search and Rescue Agency’s deputy of operations, told Reuters: “Perhaps we will do regular operations with help from fishermen and communities near the coast to find other victims.”
“We will continue to try fulfill the hopes of the victims’ relatives, but the operation will not be a large-scale one,” said Bambang Soelistyo, head of Indonesia’s search and rescue agency.
Here’s a brief synopsis of where the AirAsia flight 8501 search and recovery now stands:
- Indonesia military suspended their search and recovery effort, claiming they are unable to raise the submerged Airbus A320-200 wreckage from the seabed.
- Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee (NTSC) will continue looking for the remaining 92 victims missing.
- Preliminary AirAsia flight QZ8501 crash report, a required formality by the International Civil Aviation Organization within 30 days of the December 28 crash, expected to be released on Wednesday, January 27, 2015 will not be made public with any substantial information surrounding what is on the Airbus A320-200 cockpit voice recordings and flight data recorders at this point.
- Indonesia officials are promising a final AirAsia flight QZ8501 crash report in under a year, which would allegedly contain some substantive findings from the Airbus A320-200 cockpit voice recordings and flight data recorders.
- A final report on the complete crash investigation of the Airbus A320-200 airliner, operating as AirAsia flight 8501 on Sunday, December 28, 2014, is expected in early 2016. This final document, however, is expected not to feature the complete transcript of the cockpit voice recording, The Independent (U.K.) via Reuters reports.
- “In Indonesia it remains undisclosed,” NTSC chief Tatang Kurniadi told Reuters, “Just some important highlights will be included in the report, but it will not be made public, adding that a full analysis of what went wrong with the plane could take up to a year.”
- Indonesia’s NTSC and AirAsia management team currently speculate the Airbus A320-200 fuselage wreckage allegedly is not needed for further investigation, opting instead to focus their investigation on the airliner’s cockpit voice recordings and flight data records, which are still currently being analyzed by the NTSC investigators and advisers from Airbus manufacturing firm.
Photo Credit: BBC News
The submerged Airbus A320-200, flown as AirAsia QZ8501, crashed into the Java Sea early Sunday morning on December 28, killing all 162 passengers and AirAsia crew on board, of which only 70 victims have been recovered so far. The doomed airliner, while cruising along the flight path shown in the map above en route from Surabaya to Singapore, lost contact with Indonesian air traffic control, four minutes after the flight crew received permission to climb from 32,000 feet (9,753 meters) to 38,000 feet (11,582 meters) to evade monsoon-like heavy thunderstorms, according to Indonesia officials.
Photo Credit: The Associated Press/Adek Berry, Pool. “Indonesian divers hold the Flight Data Recorder of AirAsia Flight 8501 on board the navy vessel KRI Banda Aceh.”
The voice cockpit recorder picked up warning sirens during the flight’s final minutes, Reuters has reported. According to AFP, unconfirmed reports from Indonesia’s National Transportation Safety Committee (NTSC) crash investigators have suggested this week that the flight deck voice recordings allegedly revealed “a number of warning sirens were “screaming” at the time the pilots were trying to “recover” and stabilize the plane, including a siren that indicated the aircraft was stalling,” as the pilots’ voices were drowned out by the sound of the alarms, which were going off “for some time.”
Earlier this week on Wednesday, January 21, 2015, NTSC chief Tatang Kurniadi told Reuters, that investigators have ruled out sabotage, upon their analysis of the Airbus A320-200 cockpit voice and flight data recorders with advisers from Airbus, the airliner’s manufacturer.
Transport Minister Ignasius Jonan told Parliament earlier this week that ground radar data showed that the plane was climbing at an abnormally high rate – about 6,000 feet a minute – then dropped rapidly and disappeared. He did not say what caused the plane to climb so rapidly.
The transport minister was somewhat speculating that airliners flying inside black cells of highly turbulent monsoon storms could allegedly encounter a sudden up draft causing abnormally high air angles of attack on the wings, inducing near stall conditions of the airplane before the flight computers can recover quickly or the pilots could rapidly stabilize the airliner, allegedly speaking.
NTSC chief Tatang Kurniadi told reporters this week, “if one wing engine had stalled, the plane could spin out of control as it plummeted toward the water.”
However, he said that “only the data from the black boxes would ultimately determine what happened to flight 8501, and he declined to say whether the plane had in fact stalled.”
Mr. Tatang said “the comments made by Transport Minister Ignasius Jonan to Parliament earlier this week “were based not on data from the black boxes, but on the ground radar.”
An excessively rapid ascent is likely to cause an airplane to go into an aerodynamic stall. In 2009, an Air France AF447 Airbus A330-200 disappeared over the Atlantic Ocean in bad weather, while flying from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. Investigators determined from the jet’s black boxes that it began a steep climb and then went into a stall from which the pilots were unable to recover, The Independent (U.K.) reports.
A synopsis of what occurred during the course of the doomed Air France AF447 Airbus A330-200 airliner’s final few minutes is here.
Airbus spokesman Justin Dubon said that it was too early to comment on possible similarities between the two crashes.
Technical speculation suggest at this point the severe weather-related conditions may have most allegedly caused some degree of human factor errors, mostly likely revealed from the flight deck conversations and flight performance data and information gained from AirAsia flight 8501’s Airbus A320-200 black-boxes still to be completely analyzed and transcribed. Human factor errors are typically the result of ninety percent of catastrophic aviation accidents, according to years of research by the United States Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board.
Given that international commercial passenger air travel is expected to explode in the next decade (according to Boeing and Airbus industry projections), particularly in Southeast Asia, which is highly dependent upon air travel across deep seas and remote oceans for millions of people in the Asiatic region, consensus on recommendations of global flight tracking of commercial passenger airliners, jet black-box data streaming, and ejectable flight data recorders, must be reached quickly among airline chiefs, aviation experts, and government officials at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) “Second High-level Safety Conference” on February 2-5, 2015 at its headquarters in Montréal, Canada.
President Joko Widodo said the crash exposed widespread problems in the management of air transportation in Indonesia.
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