AirAsia flight QZ8501 goes missing during flight from Malaysia to Singapore with 162 people onboard, including one British national

Billy Ehrenberg
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An official from Indonesia's national search and rescue agency monitors computer screens during search for AirAsia flight QZ8501 (Source: Getty)
An AirAsia plane, flight QZ8501, has gone missing en-route from Indonesia to Singapore with 162 passengers onboard. One of the passengers is a British national and the next of kin have been informed, according to the Foreign Office. After hours of searching, rescue operations have now been suspended due to adverse weather conditions.
The plane is reported to have asked permission to change course prior to contact being lost, due to bad weather. Transport officials say that the crew requested to ascend to 38,000 feet due to the conditions, and communications ceased shortly after. It is thought that by now the plane’s fuel supply would have been exhausted and a search and rescue operation is underway near Indonesia. Reports suggest that the operation may be taking place around 145km from the island of Belitung.
Flightradar sent this tweet, showing the aircraft's last known flight path:
The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) has announced it will be collaborating with Indonesian authorities to locate the aircraft. CAAS released the following statement:
Indonesia has accepted Singapore’s offer to assist in the search and locate efforts of the missing Indonesia AirAsia aircraft, QZ8501.
The Singapore Rescue Coordination Centre, managed by the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore and supported by various agencies, including the Republic of Singapore Air Force and the Republic of Singapore Navy , had offered assistance to BASARNAS, the Indonesian Search and Rescue Agency, at 0930 hours local time, this morning.
We have offered our planes and ships to assist in the search, and received confirmation from the Indonesian authorities this afternoon at 14:30 hours to accept our offer, requesting for one C130 for now. We have already launched it to assist with the search and locate efforts.
The Indonesia AirAsia flight went missing this morning, more than 200 nautical miles southeast of the Singapore-Jakarta Flight Information Region boundary.
The missing plane was an Airbus A320-200, a model used by budget airline EasyJet. Not including today's incident, there have been 70 events involving aircraft in the A320 family, of which 12 involved loss of life. The data goes back to 1988.

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