US transport safety board sending team to probe Sriwijaya Air plane crash

US transport safety board sending team to probe Sriwijaya Air plane crash

Indonesia retrieves 'black box' from crashed Sriwijaya Air plane
Indonesian National Transportation Safety Committee officials hold a part of the retrieved black box of Sriwijaya Air flight SJ182, Jan 12, 2021. (Photo: REUTERS/Ajeng Dinar Ulfiana)

WASHINGTON: The United States said on Tuesday (Jan 12) it will send a team of investigators to Indonesia as part of a probe into the crash of a Sriwijaya Air plane with 62 people on board.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will send the US accredited representative and three other investigators to the Indonesian capital of Jakarta. The Boeing 737-500 plane plunged into the sea on Saturday, four minutes after it departed from Jakarta's main airport.

The NTSB has expertise in operations, human performance, airplane structures and systems, the safety board said, adding it will be joined by personnel from the US Federal Aviation Administration, General Electric and Boeing.

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Indonesia's military chief Hadi Tjahjanto said on Tuesday he was highly confident that the cockpit voice recorder from the plane would be found soon, following the retrieval of the flight data recorder.

More than 3,600 rescue personnel, 13 helicopters, 54 large ships and 20 small boats were searching the area just north of Jakarta where flight SJ182 crashed, and have found parts of the plane and human remains in the water at a depth of 23m.

READ: Sriwijaya Air crash places Indonesia's aviation safety under fresh spotlight

Searchers have sent body bags containing human remains to police identification experts, who on Monday said they had identified their first victim, 29-year-old flight attendant Okky Bisma.

Indonesia's transport ministry earlier said that the Boeing 737-500 jet, which had been grounded between March and December last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic, passed an airworthiness inspection on Dec 14.

Source: Agencies/dv