54 Missing After Indonesia Plane Crash

An airliner carrying 54 people went missing Sunday during a scheduled 42-minute flight in bad weather in Indonesia’s mountainous easternmost province of Papua, and rescuers were heading to an area where villagers reported seeing a plane crash into a mountain.

Indonesia has had its share of airline woes in recent years. The sprawling archipelago nation of 250 million people and some 17,000 islands is one of Asia’s most rapidly expanding airline markets, but is struggling to provide enough qualified pilots, mechanics, air traffic controllers and updated airport technology to ensure safety.

Last December, all 162 people aboard an AirAsia jet were killed when the plane plummeted into the Java Sea as it ran into stormy weather on its way from Surabaya, Indonesia’s second-largest city, to Singapore.

ABC’s Tom Rivers joined us from London to discuss.

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Blake produces various radio shows at AM 820 News as well as USF Athletics.