Debris from the Lion Air JT610 plane that crashed into sea on October 29 (Photo: AFP/VNA)

Jakarta (VNA) – Search and rescue efforts for passengers aboard a Lion Air plane that crashed into sea on October 29 were underway throughout the night under an order from Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

Chief of National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) Muhammad Syaugi said his agency will continue deploy more personnel for the mission.

President Joko Widodo, on October 29, cut short his working trip to Bali to express his sympathies to families of the victims and direct search and rescue activities for the victims.

Speaking to the press the same day, Widodo said the authorities have mobilised 15 boats combing the Tanjung Karawang waters, where the plane crashed, for the victims. He noted concerted efforts from the Basarnas, police and army forces, transport ministry and some private ship owners can help speed up the search and rescue process.

He ordered the Basarnas to timely update information for families of the victims and operate an around-the-clock search.

The passenger jet, a Boeing 737 Max 8 coded JT610, was en route from Jakarta to Pangkal Pinang – centre of the Bangka-Belitung tin mining region, carrying 189 people onboard. It lost contact with the air traffic control just 13 minutes after takeoff. Basarnas said on October 29 that there would be no survivors.

A Basarnas representative said it has so far sent 150 personnel to the accident site. They have recovered aircraft debris, personal items, intact bodies and body remains of the passengers.-VNA