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Indonesian authorities detail lead up to A320 disappearance

Indonesia’s transport ministry says the missing Indonesia AirAsia Airbus A320 disappeared from the radar of Jakarta’s air traffic control (ATC) at 06:18 local time, 43 minutes after it took off from Surabaya's Juanda International airport.

In a series of tweets, the ministry said that the aircraft had followed flight pathway M-635, and made contact with Jakarta’s ATC at 06:12 local time. At that point, it was cruising at 32,000ft.

The flight crew then requested to ascend to 38,000ft so as to avoid clouds.

The ministry says the aircraft could still be seen on the ATC's radar screen at 06:16, but could only be identified through the automated dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) signal a minute later.

At 06:18, the aircraft went missing from radar.

Indonesia AirAsia has so far said that flight QZ8501 lost contract with ATC at 07:24 Singapore time, and that it was requesting deviation due to enroute weather, before communication was lost.

Indonesia’s search and rescue agency Basarnas says the last known aircraft coordinate was 03 09 15 S and 111 28 21 E. This coordinate places the last known location of the aircraft about 16nm south of West Kalimantan, an Indonesian province on the island of Borneo.

The aircraft was operating on the Surabaya-Singapore route with 155 passengers and seven crew members aboard when it vanished. It was due to land at Singapore’s Changi Airport at 08:30 local time.

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