An Indonesian Lion Air flight crashed into the Java Sea | Digital Asia

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  • A from Jakarta to Pangkalpinang, the largest city on Banka island has , according to Indonesia search and rescue officials.
  • At least 188 people were on board, according to authorities.
  • The Lion Air flight took off for the 50 minute journey to the Banka island across the Natuna off South Sumatra, at 6:20 a.m. Western Time (WIB), Monday.

A Lion Air flight from Jakarta to Pangkalpinang, the largest city on Banka island has crashed, according to Indonesia search and rescue officials.

At least 188 people were on board, officials said.

Wreckage had been found near where the plane lost contact with air traffic officials on the ground, said Muhmmad Syaugi, the head of the search and rescue agency.

“We don’t know yet whether there are any survivors,” Syaugi told a news conference. “We hope, we pray, but we cannot confirm.”

The Lion Air flight took off for the 50 minute journey to the Banka island across the Natuna Sea off South Sumatra, at 6:20 a.m. Western Indonesian Time (WIB), Monday.

According to Indonesian media, TribunNews, the aircraft’s final contact was at 06.33 WIB with Jakarta Air Traffic Control.

A spokesman for Lion Air reportedly told local media the airline was trying to find information on the plane’s location.

Initial data from Flight Radar 24 suggests the plane went down in coastal waters off .

The Boeing 737 Max-8 model was originally due to land at Pangkalpinang at 07.10

In December 2014 an AirAsia Airbus went down in similar waters between Surabaya and Singapore killing all 162 people on board.

This story is developing. Check back for updates …

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