Asia-Pacific News

Indonesian plane carrying 54 found crashed in Oktabe district: Official

Reuters with CNBC
Trigana Air flight TGN 267, which used an ATR 42-300 turboprop, went missing in the Papua region Sunday. This picture, dated September 1994, shows a French ATR-42-500, a similar model, landing at Toulouse-Blagnac airport. The aircraft pictured is not flight TGN 267.
Gabriel Bouys | AFP | Getty Images

An Indonesian twin-turboprop aircraft carrying 54 people lost contact with air traffic control on Sunday, and was found crashed in the Oktabe District of Papua, according to a transportation ministry official.

The plane went missing in the remote, forested eastern Papua region, the National Search and Rescue Agency (BASARNAS) said, with search efforts hampered by failing light as night falls.

According to the official BASARNAS Twitter account, the aircraft, a short-haul ATR 42-300 airliner belonging to Trigana Air Service and built in France and Italy, was carrying 44 adult passengers, five crew and five children and infants.

The plane was flying between Jayapura's Sentani Airport and Oksibil, due south of Jayapura, the capital of Papua province.

The agency's Jayapura office was coordinating the search, a separate tweet read as dusk set in in the tropics.

Air transport is commonly used in Papua, Indonesia's easternmost province, where land travel is often impossible.

Separately, an AFP report citing a transport ministry spokesperson said that the weather in the mountainous region was currently "very bad" and wasn't conducive to a search. The route usually takes around 45 minutes, but the plane went missing about 30 minutes after departing Jayapura, the AFP reported.

According to the Aviation Safety Network, an online database, the ATR 42-300 had its first flight 27 years ago. ATR is a joint venture between Airbus and Alenia Aermacchi, a subsidiary of Italian aerospace firm Finmeccanica.