Watch LIVE

Officials: Bodies, Debris Found Floating in Waters Near Site Where AirAsia Flight Disappeared (UPDATES)

News

"My heart is filled with sadness..."

Indonesian air force CN295 crew members look from plane windows during a search and rescue operation for missing AirAsia flight QZ8501 over waters near Pangkalan, Central Kalimantan, on December 30, 2014. Items resembling an emergency slide, plane door and other objects were spotted in the sea during an aerial search on December 30 for missing AirAsia flight QZ8501, Indonesian officials said. (AFP PHOTO / Bay ISMOYO)

UPDATE 7:30 a.m. ET:

(AP) -- Searchers discovered what appeared to be a life jacket and an emergency exit door. Part of the plane's interior, including an oxygen tank, was brought to the nearest town, along with a suitcase that appeared to be in perfect condition.

An Indonesian Air Force personnel show a suitcase and airplane parts, on the table, recovered from the water near the site where AirAsia Flight 8501 disappeared, during a press conference at the airbase in Pangkalan Bun, Central Borneo, Indonesia, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014. Bodies and debris seen floating in Indonesian waters Tuesday, painfully ended the mystery of AirAsia Flight 8501, which crashed into the Java Sea and was lost to searchers for more than two days. (AP Photo/Dewi Nurcahyani) An Indonesian Air Force personnel show a suitcase and airplane parts, on the table, recovered from the water near the site where AirAsia Flight 8501 disappeared, during a press conference at the airbase in Pangkalan Bun, Central Borneo, Indonesia, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014. Bodies and debris seen floating in Indonesian waters Tuesday, painfully ended the mystery of AirAsia Flight 8501, which crashed into the Java Sea and was lost to searchers for more than two days. (AP Photo/Dewi Nurcahyani)

Commander of Indonesian Air Force 1st Operational Command Rear Marshall Dwi Putranto, center, shows the airplane parts and a suitcase found floating on the water near the site where AirAsia Flight 8501 disappeared, during a press conference at the airbase in Pangkalan Bun, Central Borneo, Indonesia, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014. Bodies and debris seen floating in Indonesian waters Tuesday, painfully ended the mystery of AirAsia Flight QZ8501, which crashed into the Java Sea and was lost to searchers for more than two days. (AP Photo/Dewi Nurcahyani) Commander of Indonesian Air Force 1st Operational Command Rear Marshall Dwi Putranto, center, shows the airplane parts and a suitcase found floating on the water near the site where AirAsia Flight 8501 disappeared, during a press conference at the airbase in Pangkalan Bun, Central Borneo, Indonesia, Tuesday, Dec. 30, 2014. Bodies and debris seen floating in Indonesian waters Tuesday, painfully ended the mystery of AirAsia Flight QZ8501, which crashed into the Java Sea and was lost to searchers for more than two days. (AP Photo/Dewi Nurcahyani)

UPDATE 4:30 a.m. ET: More than 40 bodies have now been recovered, the Indonesian navy confirmed.

Story by the Associated Press; curated by Oliver Darcy.

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Indonesian officials on Tuesday spotted six bodies from the AirAsia flight that disappeared two days earlier, and recovered three of them, in a painful end to the aviation mystery off the coast of Borneo island.

The bodies were found in Java Sea waters about 10 kilometers (6 miles) from Flight 8501's last communications with air-traffic control. The plane with 162 people on board disappeared Sunday on its way from Surabaya, Indonesia to Singapore after encountering storm clouds.

Indonesian air force CN295 crew members look from plane windows during a search and rescue operation for missing AirAsia flight QZ8501 over waters near Pangkalan, Central Kalimantan, on December 30, 2014. Items resembling an emergency slide, plane door and other objects were spotted in the sea during an aerial search on December 30 for missing AirAsia flight QZ8501, Indonesian officials said. (AFP PHOTO / Bay ISMOYO) Indonesian air force CN295 crew members look from plane windows during a search and rescue operation for missing AirAsia flight QZ8501 over waters near Pangkalan, Central Kalimantan, on December 30, 2014. Items resembling an emergency slide, plane door and other objects were spotted in the sea during an aerial search on December 30 for missing AirAsia flight QZ8501, Indonesian officials said. (AFP PHOTO / Bay ISMOYO)

The three recovered bodies, swollen but intact, were brought to an Indonesian navy ship, National Search and Rescue Director SB Supriyadi told reporters in the nearest town, Pangkalan Bun. The corpses did not have life jackets on.

Images on Indonesian television showed a half-naked bloated body bobbing in the sea. Search and rescue teams were lowered on ropes from a hovering helicopter to retrieve corpses.

As family members of the plane's passengers sat together in a waiting room at the Surabaya airport, they watched the graphic details on television. Many screamed and wailed uncontrollably, breaking down into tears while they squeezed each other. One middle-aged man collapsed and was rushed from the room on a stretcher.

The discovery came after several pieces of red, white and black debris were spotted in the Java Sea near Borneo island.

This aerial view taken from an Indonesian search and rescue aircraft over the Java Sea shows floating debris spotted in the same area as other items being investigated by Indonesian authorities as possible objects from missing AirAsia flight QZ8501 on December 30, 2014. (BAY ISMOYO/AFP/Getty Images) This aerial view taken from an Indonesian search and rescue aircraft over the Java Sea shows floating debris spotted in the same area as other items being investigated by Indonesian authorities as possible objects from missing AirAsia flight QZ8501 on December 30, 2014. (BAY ISMOYO/AFP/Getty Images)

AirAsia group CEO Tony Fernandes tweeted, "My heart is filled with sadness for all the families involved in QZ 8501. On behalf of AirAsia my condolences to all. Words cannot express how sorry I am."

Most recent
All Articles