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AirAsia Flight 8501 loses contact with traffic control

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Posted at 9:05 PM, Dec 27, 2014
and last updated 2014-12-27 23:43:33-05

By Jethro Mullen

CNN

(CNN) — The search is on for AirAsia Flight 8501, which lost contact with air traffic control in Indonesia, the airline said Sunday.

Flight QZ 8501 from the Indonesian city of Surabaya to Singapore lost contact with air traffic control at 7:24 a.m. Sunday (7:24 p.m. Saturday ET), AirAsia said

“At the present time we unfortunately have no further information regarding the status of the passengers and crew members on board, but we will keep all parties informed as more information becomes available,” AirAsia said in a statement.

The plane had 155 passengers and crew on board, the news agency Reuters reported, citing Indonesian transport officials.

The flight, an Airbus A320-200, was on its way from Surabaya in Indonesia to Singapore, according to the airline’s website.

The plane left Juanda International Airport at 5:27 a.m. Sunday (5:27 p.m. Saturday ET) and was due to arrive in Singapore at 8:37 a.m. Sunday (7:37 p.m. ET), according to the website.

The loss of contact with the AirAsia plane comes more than eight months after the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which dropped off radar over Southeast Asia in March.

Searchers are yet to find any debris from Flight 370, which officials believe crashed in the southern Indian Ocean.

CNN’s Yousuf Basil, Steve Almasy and Larry Register contributed to this report.

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The airline released the following statement via Facebook:

AirAsia Indonesia regrets to confirm that flight QZ8501 from Surabaya to Singapore has lost contact with air traffic control at 07:24hrs this morning.

At the present time we unfortunately have no further information regarding the status of the passengers and crew members on board, but we will keep all parties informed as more information becomes available.

The aircraft was an Airbus A320-200 with the registration number PK-AXC.

At this time, search and rescue operations are in progress and AirAsia is cooperating fully and assisting the rescue service.

AirAsia has established an Emergency Call Centre that is available for family or friends of those who may have been on board the aircraft. The number is: +622129850801.

AirAsia will release further information as soon as it becomes available. Updated information will also be posted on the AirAsia website, www.airasia.com.