A police plane is missing after taking off from Pangkal Pinang on the island of Bangka near Sumatra over the weekend with 13 people on board, and with reports of body parts being recovered from sea, all passengers are feared to be dead.
The twin-engine Indonesian police plane dropped off the radar after leaving for the island of Batam near Singapore, according to The Associated Press.
The M28 Skytruck plane is believed to have crashed between the islands of Mensanak and Sebangka or Gentar, Reuters noted.
The plane’s eight passengers were policeman. It also carried five crew members.
A search team has recovered what appears to be items from the missing plane, including “seats, luggage and documents,” Reuters reported.
National Search and Rescue Agency chief Henry Bambang Soelistyo said body parts were recovered near where villagers had found a seat and a bag with a cellphone and police documents, the AP said.
Local media reported that “police uniforms and other clothing also were retrieved from the sea,” the AP said.
“We found debris,” Soelistyo told Reuters.
Soelistyo said the search team had covered a 200 square nautical mile area.
“With clearance from the Indonesian authorities, one SuperPuma helicopter and one Fokker 50 are currently on-scene supporting the Indonesians to locate the aircraft,” the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) said in a statement, according to Reuters. “Two ships are awaiting clearance by the Indonesian authorities to assist in the search and rescue efforts.”
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