AirAsia flight QZ8501: Indonesia's search agency finds wreckage at bottom of sea, says report

A member of the Indonesian military looks out of the window during the search operation for missing Malaysian air carrier AirAsia flight QZ8501 over the waters of the Java Sea on Dec 29, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP
A member of the Indonesian military looks out of the window during the search operation for missing Malaysian air carrier AirAsia flight QZ8501 over the waters of the Java Sea on Dec 29, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP

JAKARTA - Indonesia's search and rescue agency Basarnas has found wreckage from AirAsia flight QZ8501 at the bottom of sea, according to CNN.

Search and rescue official Hernato said sonar equipment detected the plane, but it was not clear whether it is in one piece or broken up, CNN reported.

The Wall Street Journal reported earlier that Indonesia's search and rescue agency had obtained a sonar image that it says may be the body of the AirAsia jet on the floor of the Java Sea.

The report, quoting Basarnas, said the image appears to show an airplane upside down on the ocean floor in 24m to 30m of water.

The image was obtained on Tuesday by an Indonesian Navy ship that is part of the search-and-recovery effort, WSJ reported on Wednesday, citing the agency.

The journal said a comparison of location coordinates released by the agency suggests the object is about 3.2km to 3.5km from several fields of floating debris that were discovered on Tuesday.

Meantime, another three bodies were found on Wednesday in the search for the plane that went missing on Sunday morning, as recovery teams struggled with bad weather.

One of the bodies was dressed in air stewardess uniform, said F. H. Bambang Soelistyo, chief of Basarnas.

The other two bodies were male, he told reporters at a press conference.

This brings the total number of bodies recovered so far to six.

On Tuesday, two female bodies and one male body were found.

Soelistyo told reporters on Wednesday that the retrieval process of bodies and debris had been hampered by bad weather.

"We are in a wait and see. Weather is bad currently. High tides and heavy rains. Every element is now in their position ready to make a move when weather improves," he said.

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