Lion Air 737 crashes into sea in Indonesia

UPDATE @ 1.30PM Rescue crews have located what they believe is the crash site of a Lion Air 737 in Indonesia.

The plane went missing shortly after taking off from Jakarta Airport.

A major search and rescue operation has now been launched.


Debris including plane seats and personal belongings have reportedly been spotted in the water.

Officials say 189 people were on board the plane including 178 adults, 1 child, 2 infants and 8 crew.

The Department of Foreign Affairs is making urgent enquiries to establish if any Australians were on board.

EARLIER @ 1.00PM: A major search and rescue operation is underway after a passenger plane crashed in waters in Indonesia.

The Lion Air 737 Max-8 went missing about 10 minutes after taking off from Jakarta’s international airport.

The flight was en route to Pangkal Pinang, on the island of Bangka.

“We can confirm that one of our flights has lost contact, its position cannot be ascertained yet,” Lion Air spokesperson Danang Mandala Prihantoro said.

It’s understood contact with the plane was lost at around 6.30am local time.

Indonesia’s search and rescue agency is due to hold a briefing at 10am local time (1pm AEST)

Indonesia has a chequered air safety history with the last major crash happening in 2014.

162 people were killed when an Air Asia plane crashed into the sea during a flight from Surabaya to Singapore.

More to come