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AirAsia Debris Identified Off the Coast of Borneo

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The ongoing search attempt to discover AirAsia Flight 8501 is edging closer to a discovery. Indonesian officials have announced that they've discovered airplane debris in waters near the island of Borneo—and officials are "95% certain" it's from the missing plane.

Update: Indonesian 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.


Bambang Soelistyo, head of Indonesia's search-and-rescue efforts, has also told the media that in the areas beneath the debris there is a also a shadow that looks like an aircraft. Sadly, what appears to be a body was also observed floating on the surface. Now, 21 divers are being deployed at the site to investigate further.

While it's not certain that the debris is from the Flight 8501 incident, Djoko Murjatmodjo, Indonesia's acting director general for civil aviation, has explained that the newly discovered debris is red and white—the same colors as the AirAsia plane. 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 airplane just moments later. It didn't send a distress signal.

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