Recovered plane parts are placed on a truck as rescuers recovered bodies from the crash site of an Indonesian Air Force C-130 Hercules aircraft He added that even though the other three engines were still functional it would have been impossible to control the plane as the problem occurred just after taking off.
Medan: The Indonesian military plane that crashed into a residential neighbourhood and killed 142 people likely suffered an engine failure, the air force said Thursday, but denied the aircraft was overloaded after claims civilians had paid to get on board.
The plane, which was carrying logistics from the airbase in Soewondo, Medan, to the Riau Islands, crashed at Jalan Jamin Ginting, Medan, hitting several shophouses and a traditional treatment centre.
At first, the air force reported the plane only had 12 crew members when it crashed, according to The Washington Post.
“The plane crashed while it was turning right to return to the airport”, he said.
The military has set up command posts in Jakarta and Medan to help the victims’ families, Supriatna said.
The Head of Information and Library, Medan Air Base, Major Jhoni Tarigan in a media statement said that based on the latest data, the passengers on the airplane included 33 air force personnel and six from the army. He said he was unaware of regulations prohibiting most civilians on military flights.
“If they took a commercial flight, it would cost them Rp 1 million per person”.
The possible breach of rules once again puts scrutiny on the patchy safety record of the Indonesian aviation sector, which is among the fastest-growing in the region. The incident prompted the government to introduce a slew of regulations aimed at improving safety.
“We have to be involved from the beginning in design, production, operations, training, maintenance and elimination of aged weapons”, he told reporters in Depok, West Java.
The Indonesian air force has now lost four C-130s, reducing its transport reach in an archipelago that stretches more than 5,000 kilometres from its western to eastern tips. Jakarta has grounded its remaining eight C-130Bs until investigators discover the cause of the crash.
“The accident serves as a red light for the military, which urgently needs to upgrade its equipment”, said Mahfudz Siddiq, the Indonesian Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman, on Tuesday.
Officers wearing face masks and white gloves are seen carrying the coffins with the bodies that have been identified into trucks for transport to families.
The crash could spur Southeast Asia’s largest country to boost military spending, now the lowest in the region at just 0.8 percent of GDP.
At the time, there were calls for a bigger military budget to replace aging planes.