Asia-Pacific

Indonesian divers retrieve AirAsia black box from seabed

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A team of Indonesian divers have retrieved a flight data recorder of the ill-fated AirAsia Flight QZ8501 that crashed deep into the Java Sea some two weeks ago, killing 162 people on board.

The head of Indonesia’s search and rescue agency, Bambang Soelistyo, made the announcement on Monday, adding that they were still searching for a second black box, the cockpit voice recorder.

The breakthrough comes hours after the Indonesian Transport Ministry released a statement saying the black box had been located near the tail of the Airbus A320 aircraft, lodged in debris at a depth of 30 meters (100 foot) in the Java Sea.

The black box is expected to be taken to the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, for analysis. Experts say it could take up to two weeks to download its information.

Although the Indonesian Agency for Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics says bad weather most likely caused the accident, studying the data on the black box will shed light on the cause of the crash.

About 50 bodies have been retrieved so far.

On December 28, 2014, the Indonesia AirAsia Airbus A320 disappeared en route to Singapore from Surabaya in Indonesia, with 155 passengers and seven crew members on board. The plane was later found to have crashed in the Java Sea under yet unknown circumstances.

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