Mystery Surrounding Plane's Disappearance Continues
The UK is sending a
specialized ship to join the US Navy's oceanographic survey ship,
USNS Mary Sears, in the search for an Adam Air 737-400 missing
since January 1. The British ship is said to be part of the
The Jakarta Post reports on January 23 the USNS Mary Sears
detected two pieces of metal at a depth of over 6,000 feet that
might be portions of the aircraft's fuselage.
An Elshinta radio station quoted a US official as saying, "The
ship has detected two undersea metals. We hope this could be a
significant clue to find Adam Air's jetliner."
Indonesia's national search and rescue (SAR) team chairman
Bambang Karnoyudho told the Malaysian National News Agency,
"Starting today, a British ship will help us search for the missing
passenger aircraft in the Makassar Straits."
So far, SAR efforts have focused on the waters off the western
coast of Sulawesi, one of the island nation's larger land masses.
To date, searchers have found 193 pieces -- 154 of which have
been positively identified as belonging to the missing jetliner --
but no clues as to what might have brought it down.
A Singaporean team from that country's Aircraft Accident
Investigation Bureau has gone home after a fruitless effort to
locate the plane's voice and data recorders. The team brought
specialized underwater equipment to home on the so-called "black
box's" locator beacons, but they were unsuccessful.
Indonesian government restrictions on the length of any SAR
effort have already been exceeded as the country struggles to
understand what happened to the aircraft.
Meanwhile, Adam Air has pledged to pay roughly $55,000 in
compensation -- over and above any insurance payment -- to the
families of each passenger aboard the aircraft.
During a hearing before the country's house of representatives,
Adam Air's president said, "The amount is apart from the insurance
payment from Jasa Rahardja totaling Rp40 to Rp50 million per
passenger. This is from us."
The payments are to go out as soon as government officials stop