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Plane Crashed 300 Feet From 'Shocked' Fisherman

Flight data recorder has been found
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2021 10:00 AM CST

(Newser) – Searchers have found clothing, body parts, parts of the fuselage, and now, one of two black boxes aboard the Boeing 737 that crashed into the Java Sea on Saturday. The flight data recorder has been recovered, while officials continue to search for the cockpit voice recorder, reports the BBC. The black boxes are likely to provide clues about what caused Sriwijaya Air Flight 182 to crash into the Java Sea near Lancang Island shortly after takeoff from Jakarta. Bound for Pontianak on the island of Borneo, the plane took off at 2:36pm local time, climbing almost 11,000 feet before falling to 250 feet at 2:40pm. The plane crashed just 300 feet from a "shocked" fisherman's boat, reports the New York Times. "It exploded when it hit the water. I saw debris floating. It was airplane debris," the man says.

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Soerjanto Tjahjono, director of Indonesia's National Transportation Safety Committee, backs up that account. The discovery of a damaged fan blade within the plane's turbine disc "indicates that the machine was still functioning when it crashed," he says, per the BBC. "This [is] also in line with the belief that the plane's system was still functioning." The 26-year-old plane had been out of commission for much of the coronavirus pandemic. It passed an airworthiness inspection on Dec. 14, made a test flight without passengers on Dec. 19, then resumed commercial flights on Dec. 22, per the BBC. The plane was at half capacity when it crashed, killing 50 passengers and 12 crew members, all Indonesians. CNN names several victims, including a couple in their 20s and their 7-month-old son. (Read more plane crash stories.)

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