An AirAsia Flight carrying 162 people aboard has gone missing, making its last contact with air traffic control at approximately 7:24 a.m. local time in Indonesia on Sunday after requesting a course change due to bad weather while on its way to Singapore. The flight left from Surabaya, Indonesia and shortly thereafter requested a new flight path but was unable to receive it due to a loss of communication.
Indonesia’s director general of transportation, Djoko Murjatmodjo, said the pilot of Flight QZ8501 asked to “avoid clouds by turning left and going higher to 34,000 feet.” He was trying to avoid showers and hail on the flight’s trajectory. Sadly, rescuers continue to search Indonesian waters but have had no results. However, the search has expanded from the waters around Belitung Island, Indonesia to a minimum of four new sectors that will include ground area, according to Bambang Soelistyo, the head of Indonesia’s National Search and Rescue Agency.
As the search expands, I continue to pray and hope for the people of Flight QZ8501 and their families. May God be with you in this difficult time and may you find peace and a resolution soon. My thoughts are all with you.
Play the video below to watch developing news coverage of the situation:
UPDATE (12/30/14): In a heartbreaking resolution, bodies belonging to some of the passengers and crew aboard AirAsia Flight QZ8501 have been found, just six miles from the site where the aircraft lost communication with Air Traffic Control requesting an alternate route due to bad weather. The bodies that were found were not wearing life jackets. The search and rescue will continue, officials have confirmed. To read more coverage on this story, click here.