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Flight QZ8501: Object Believed To Be the Fuselage

Divers Focus Shifted To An Object

 

Indonesian divers on Wednesday investigated an object believed to be the fuselage of the crashed AirAsia jet and the resting place of most of the victims, after retrieving the black boxes of the plane that went down with 162 people on board.

Flight QZ8501 crashed in the Java Sea on December 28 in stormy weather during a short, routine flight from the Indonesian city of Surabaya to Singapore.

Both black boxes, the flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder, were recovered this week after a frustrating, lengthy search often hampered by bad weather. They should provide investigators with vital information about what caused the crash.

Scores of divers on Wednesday shifted their focus to investigating an object thought to the jet’s main body, which was earlier spotted on sonar scans and is lying about two miles (three kilometres) from where the plane’s tail was found.

Finding the fuselage of the Airbus 320-200 is seen as vital, as most of the victims are believed to be still trapped inside. Just 48 bodies have so far been recovered.

Search and rescue agency official S.B. Supriyadi said if the object, which is lying about 30 metres (100 feet) under water, turned out to be the fuselage, divers would examine how it could be raised from the water.

“If it is not too heavy, we may lift the whole piece and evacuate the victims,” Supriyadi, who is coordinating what, has been a huge, international search,

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