AirAsia Flight QZ8501 Loses Contact with Traffic Control on Route to Singapore


The airline AirAsia lost contact with flight QZ8501 over the Java Sea in Indonesia late tonight. The plane was flying at roughly 32,000 feet when contact between it and traffic control got cut off. Multiple reports say 162 people were on board.

AirAsia provided details in a statement posted to its Facebook page:

AirAsia Indonesia regrets to confirm that flight QZ8501 from Surabaya to Singapore has lost contact with air traffic control at 07:24hrs this morning.

At the present time we unfortunately have no further information regarding the status of the passengers and crew members on board, but we will keep all parties informed as more information becomes available.

The aircraft was an Airbus A320-200 with the registration number PK-AXC.

At this time, search and rescue operations are in progress and AirAsia is cooperating fully and assisting the rescue service.

And if you go to its Facebook page, its logo has changed colors since the plane went missing:

The plane left Surabaya Juanda International Airport on route to Singapore, but the flight was supposed to land hours ago. Indonesian Transport Minister Hadi Mustofa said the last communication from the flight was the pilot asking to fly higher because of bad weather (possibly a storm, reports suggest) in the area.

AirAsia is based out of Malaysia (kind of a strange coincidence given MH370), and the Prime Minister of Malaysia has already commented on the disappearance:

Flightradar24 has some information up about where the plane was when it lost contact:

There’s also a statement out about action being taken by the Singapore Rescue Coordination Centre:

Update- 12:33 am EST: AirAsia put out a new statement confirming there were 162 people on board––155 passengers, 7 crew members––and said that search and rescue operations are underway. 157 of the individuals on board were Indonesian, 3 were South Korean, 1 was Malaysian, and 1 was from Singapore.

You can watch CNN’s report below:

UPDATE – 12/28/14: Watch the latest updates via CNN, below:

[image via nitinut380/Shutterstock]

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac