Search and rescue workers looking for the Indonesian flight Lion Air that crashed with 189 people on board, believe they might have found the fuselage of the plane. The team is trying to confirm the origin of an underwater “ping” signal, officials said on Wednesday.
Hadi Tjahjanto said that authorities were confident sonar technology had pinpointed the location of the Boeing 737-MAX plane that plunged into the sea on Monday. “We strongly believe we’ve determined the coordinates of the JT 610 fuselage,” he told reporters in Jakarta. “However, it has not yet been confirmed that it is part of the fuselage.” Authorities have been searching for the downed jet’s location in water some 30-40 meters (100-130 feet) deep in the hope of also finding flight data recorders crucial to crash investigations.
Dozens of divers were taking part in the recovery effort along with helicopters and ships, but authorities have all but ruled out finding any survivors. Boeing officials are expected to meet with Lion Air on Wednesday after Indonesia ordered an inspection of the US plane maker’s 737-MAX jets.
Meanwhile, Indonesia’s Transport Minister removed on Wednesday the technical director of the Lion Air airline and several of its technicians after the crash, the Antara news agency reported on Wednesday.
“Today we dismiss (the director) from his position and his duty,” Budi Karya Sumadi said, citing the accident on Monday as the reason. He said technicians were also dismissed. It was not clear whether the removal was permanent or temporary.