New Delhi, Dec 29: 3 ships and a maritime surveillance aircraft has been placed on standby for assisting the search operation of the missing AirAsia plane. The plane went missing with 162 people onboard enroute Indonesia to Singapore after the plane lost all contact with air traffic controllers.
The Indian Navy has put one ship in Bay of Bengal and another one in Andaman and Nicobar islands on standby, apart from a P-8I aircraft. This is used for maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare operations.
Sources say,"The assets have been put on standby in view of the gravity of situation. They will be rushed into service as and when any order is issued." A transport official in Singapore said Flight QZ8501 lost contact with Jakarta Air Traffic Control just after 07:24 hours local time.
The aircraft was in the Indonesian Flight Information Region (FIR), which was more than 200 nautical miles southeast of the Singapore-Jakarta FIR boundary. This is when contact was lost, Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) said. Contact with the plane was lost 42 minutes after takeoff. No Indian national was on board.