TIME Aviation

Search for AirAsia Wreckage Ends

INDONESIA-SINGAPORE-MALAYSIA-AVIATION-AIRASIA
An Indonesian rescue helicopter flies over the Crest Onyx ship as divers (R in rubber boats) conduct operations to lift the tail of AirAsia QZ8501 in the Java Sea on January 9, 2015. Adek Berry—AFP/Getty Images

Searchers have found 70 of the 162 bodies

Indonesia’s military suspended a search effort for a downed AirAsia flight in the Java Sea on Tuesday, drawing to a close a 30-day effort to retrieve bodies from the wreckage.

“We apologize to the families of the victims,” Rear Adm. Widodo said, according to Reuters. “We tried our best to look for the missing victims.”

Divers with the Indonesian military have struggled against strong currents and murky water conditions to retrieve bodies from the wreckage site, submerged some 100 feet below sea level. Officials said they had retrieved 70 bodies to date from the wreckage site, and no bodies were known to remain in the fuselage, the New York Times reports.

The plane had 162 people on board when it crashed last month.

TIME Aviation

Search Crews Locate Missing AirAsia Flight’s Fuselage

AirAsia aircraft tail storage is recovered
AirAsia aircraft tail is recovered from the Java Sea on Jan. 12, 2015, in Pangkalan Bun, Indonesia Denny Pohan—Demotix/Corbis

Official hopes it brings "some form of closure" to families

Search crews located the fuselage of missing Air Asia Flight 8501 on Wednesday, officials said, marking a breakthrough in a the search for the plane’s scattered wreckage and the missing passengers’ remains.

“The [rescue team] has located the fuselage of the AirAsia plane in the Java Sea,” Singapore’s Defense Minister Ng Eng Hen wrote on Facebook, saying the fuselage had been found by a remotely operated vehicle in the Java Sea, 2 km away from the tail. The flight en route from Indonesia to Singapore vanished over the Java Sea on Dec. 28 with 162 people on board.

The Facebook post included images of the submerged wreckage, which showed a section of the wing and AirAsia’s slogan “Now Everyone Can Fly” legibly printed on the side of the plane.

“I hope that with the fuselage located, some form of closure can come to the families of the victims to ease their grief,” Ng wrote.

TIME indonesia

Divers Search for Black Boxes in Crashed AirAsia Plane

Indonesia Plane
Naval aircrewman 2nd Class Cody Witherspoon helps in the search for missing AirAsia Flight 8501 in the Java Sea on Jan. 6, 2015 Petty Officer 1st Class Brett Cote—AP

"But strong current and less than 1 meter of visibility hampered their efforts"

(PANGKALAN BUN, INDONESIA) — Divers were hoping to zero in on AirAsia Flight 8501’s black boxes Thursday, after search and recovery operations got a much-needed boost with the discovery of a chunk of the plane’s tail — nearly two weeks after it plummeted into the sea, killing everyone onboard.

The flight and cockpit voice recorders, which are crucial to helping determine what caused the jet to go down, are located in the rear section of the aircraft.

Divers and at least six ships equipped with underwater detectors were working in the area where an unmanned underwater vehicle spotted the tail Wednesday — the 10th day of hunting, said Suryadi B. Surpiyadi, a search and rescue operation coordinator from Pangkalan Bun, the closest town to the site.

The wreckage was found upside down and partially buried in the sea floor about 9 kilometers (6 miles) from where the Airbus A320 carrying 162 passengers and crew lost contact with the control tower on Dec. 28. The plane was nearly halfway between the Indonesian city of Surabaya and Singapore.

The registration number, PK-AXC, and part of the AirAsia logo proved it was the plane, Surpiyadi said.

Divers on Thursday were unable to make progress. The water in the Java Sea is relatively shallow at about 30 meters (100 feet) deep, but this is the worst time of year for a recovery operation with monsoon rains and wind creating choppy seas and blinding silt from river runoff.

“Their mission was to check on whether the black boxes are still in their positions or have been loosened,” National Search and Rescue chief Henry Bambang Soelistyo said. “But strong current and less than 1 meter of visibility hampered their efforts.”

He said that expert teams from Indonesia and France were looking for a technique on how to find and lift the black boxes from the plane’s tail.

Tony Fernandes, AirAsia’s chief executive officer, tweeted Wednesday that black boxes should be in the tail.

He said that the airline’s priority is still is to recover all the bodies “to ease the pain of our families.”

The carrier, meanwhile, said families of those killed would be compensated in accordance with Indonesian laws. Each will receive $100,000 (1.25 billion rupiah), Sunu Widyatmoko, president of AirAsia Indonesia, told reporters in Surabaya.

So far, 40 corpses have been found. Officials are hopeful many of the 122 bodies still unaccounted for will be found inside the fuselage, which is thought to be lying near the tail.

Bad weather is believed to be a contributing factor to the crash.

Just before losing contact, the pilot told air traffic control he was approaching threatening clouds, but was denied permission to climb to a higher altitude because of heavy air traffic. No distress signal was issued.

Finding the black boxes will be key to the investigation. They provide essential information about the plane along with final conversations between the captain and co-pilot. The ping-emitting beacons still have about 20 days before their batteries go dead, but high waves had prevented the deployment of ships that drag ping locators.

___

Associated Press writers Niniek Karmini, Ali Kotarumalos and Margie Mason in Jakarta, Indonesia, contributed to this report.

TIME Holidays

It’s New Year’s Day and Everyone Is Googling ‘Hangover Cure’

hangover
Getty Images

Google searches reveal that Jan. 1 is the most hungover day of the year, by a lot

You may not fully remember what you did for New Year’s Eve 2014, but Google has a pretty good idea.

The number of people Googling the phrase “hangover cure” surges January 1–a point illustrated clearly in this chart posted by Wonkblog’s Christopher Ingraham. It’s the biggest day of the year (by far) for searches on ways to heal a booze-addled brain after one too many champagne toasts to ring in the new year.

Next down the list for the year’s most hungover days are the Saturday after Halloween, followed by May 17 (for unknown reasons; personally, I suspect it’s because it’s the day after a particularly entertaining friend’s birthday), and then July 5.

Read more at Wonkblog

TIME Aviation

Objects Spotted That May Be Related to Missing AirAsia Jet, Say Officials

The Indonesian official leading search operations believes Flight QZ 8501 has sunk

An Australian Orion aircraft has detected suspicious objects that may be related to the missing AirAsia jet, in the Java Sea around 700 miles (1,120 km) from where contact with Flight QZ 8501 was lost.

The sightings were made near the tiny island of Nangka, located in the western part of the Indonesian archipelago, approximately midway between the large islands of Sumatra and Borneo.

However, the commander of Jakarta air-force base, Rear Marshal Dwi Putranto, stressed that nothing could be confirmed. “We cannot be sure whether it is part of the missing AirAsia plane,” he told the Associated Press. “We are now moving in that direction, which is in cloudy conditions.”

The Singapore-bound QZ 8501 lost contact with air-traffic control early Sunday, 42 minutes after departing Surabaya, Indonesia, at 5:35 a.m. local time. There were 162 people on board.

On Sunday, search vessels and aircraft were not able to spot any sign of the Airbus A320-200.

“Based on the coordinates given to us and evaluation that the estimated crash position is in the sea, the hypothesis is the plane is at the bottom of the sea,” Indonesia’s National Search and Rescue Agency chief Bambang Soelistyo told a press conference earlier on Monday.

“Even fishermen are being asked to find the plane,” Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla told reporters at Surabaya’s Juanda Airport on Monday afternoon. “Of course, we hope that we find survivors, we pray for that, but we realize that the worst may have happened.”

Records show that Iriyanto, the captain of QZ 8501, who like many Indonesians only uses one name, had requested to ascend from 32,000 ft. (9,700 m) to 38,000 ft. (11,600 m) to avoid cloud, but this was denied. Meteorologists say cloud tops may have reached over 50,000 ft. (15,200 m), and satellite imagery shows a huge storm that quickly disappeared, indicating a massive amount of rainfall in a short period.

Experts are speculating the plane may have come down because of adverse weather. “In that area of the world, weather is something you have to deal with all of the time and it’s why we have a weather radar to keep clear of the most intense areas of rain and turbulence,” David Newbery, a Hong Kong flight captain and accredited aircraft-accident investigator, tells TIME.

“I’m very devastated by what’s happened,” AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes told reporters in Surabaya late Sunday. “It’s unbelievable. But we don’t now what’s happened yet. Our concern right now is for the relatives and the next of kin — nothing is more important for us.”

In a statement posted to his Facebook page on Sunday evening, Indonesian President Joko Widodo urged all those looking for the missing plane to “keep up the hard work.” He added: “I am also praying to God for the safety of the passengers of AirAsia Flight QZ 8501.”

Indonesia is providing 12 ships, three helicopters and five military aircraft for the search efforts, while Malaysia has offered a C-130 plane and three ships. Singapore has dispatched a C-130 and Australia is also providing aerial assistance. India has put ships on standby.

Sunday’s search was hampered by heavy rain and poor visibility, but the skies cleared overnight, the bright sun burning off sea fog, and raising hopes that some wreckage may be spotted Monday.

The waters of the Java Sea, a major shipping route, are comparatively shallow, and pinpointing the missing jetliner’s location should, in theory, be straightforward, given that its last known position was just one third into a two-hour flight. Sonar pings from the black box would likely be audible, and divers could even reach the seabed without the use of submersibles.

The loss of QZ8501 is the third major aviation disaster this year with Malaysia links, after the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 in March and the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 over Ukraine in July. AirAsia Indonesia, which operated QZ8501, is 49% owned by the Malaysia-based AirAsia.

With reporting by Yenni Kwok

Read next: Everything We Know About the Missing AirAsia Flight QZ 8501

TIME Web

The One Celebrity We Couldn’t Stop Googling in 2014

Thanks to a pair of blockbuster movies, a Golden Globe and a photo hack

Academy Award-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence tops Google’s list of the top trending searches of people in the U.S. in 2014, the search giant announced Tuesday.

The 24-year-old star was in the news — and, inevitably, the Google search bar — for a lot of reasons this year. She starred in two blockbuster sequels, X-Men: Days of Future Past and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1, and picked up a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress for her role in American Hustle. Lawrence was also at the center of the celebrity iCloud hack, in which dozens of famous women had their nude photos stolen and posted online.

Following Lawrence on the list was Kim Kardashian, who tried (and failed) to “#BreaktheInternet” by appearing nude on the cover of Paper in November and released a hit mobile game this year. In third place was 30 Rock star Tracy Morgan, who was involved in a serious bus wreck over the summer, while NFL running back Ray Rice, who was suspended from the league after punching his fiancée-turned-wife on camera, ranked fourth. Rounding out the top 5 was Tony Stewart, the NASCAR driver involved in the on-track death of fellow driver Kevin Ward in August.

The list is not necessarily the most-searched people of the year, but rather the people that had searches for their name spike the most compared to 2013. Here’s the entire top 10:

Top 10 Trending People in the U.S.

  1. Jennifer Lawrence
  2. Kim Kardashian
  3. Tracy Morgan
  4. Ray Rice
  5. Tony Stewart
  6. Iggy Azalea
  7. Donald Sterling
  8. Adrian Peterson
  9. Renee Zellweger
  10. Jared Leto


Read next: The Top 10 Everything of 2014

TIME Web

Robin Williams Was Google’s Top Trending Search of 2014

Robin Williams
Art Streiber—CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images

Robin Williams topped a list that also included the World Cup, Ebola, ISIS and Flappy Bird

Robin Williams topped Google’s list of the top trending searches in 2014.

The comedian and actor, who died in August, led the list of the people, places and things that got the biggest boost in search traffic this year compared to 2013. The list of actual “most searched” terms is actually pretty boring, Google says, because it includes generic terms like “weather” and website names like “Google.”

Overall, the list reflects the way global crises co-mingle with pop culture phenomena on the Internet. Second to Robin Williams was the World Cup, which sparked widespread discussion across the Web. Third was Ebola, the viral epidemic that sparked scares in West Africa and elsewhere around the world as it emerged in different locales. Fourth was Malaysia Airlines, which was in the news first for a plane that mysteriously disappeared in March and later for a second plane that was shot down over Ukraine in July. Rounding out the top five was the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, in which people recorded themselves being doused in cold water to raise money for charity.

Check out the full Top 10 below:

  1. Robin Williams
  2. World Cup
  3. Ebola
  4. Malaysia Airlines
  5. ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
  6. Flappy Bird
  7. Conchita Wurst
  8. ISIS
  9. Frozen
  10. Sochi Olympics
TIME Social Media

Facebook Unfriends Microsoft Search Engine

Facebook offices in Paris, France in 2010.
Facebook offices in Paris, France in 2010. Tomas van Houtryve—VII for TIME

The social media behemoth may be angling in on Google-dominated web search

Facebook has officially dropped from its website search results from Bing, the search engine owned by Microsoft Corp.

The move comes on the heels of Facebook unveiling a new search tool on its own site, allowing the site’s 1.35 billion users to easily search for old Facebook activity on theirs and others’ pages, perhaps indicating an increased emphasis on the lucrative web search market currently dominated by Facebook rival Google.

Facebook’s decision was confirmed to Reuters on Friday by a company spokesperson. “We’re not currently showing web search results in Facebook Search because we’re focused on helping people find what’s been shared with them on Facebook,” a spokesperson said. “We continue to have a great partnership with Microsoft in lots of different areas.

[Reuters]

TIME Social Media

You Asked: Can I Delete All My Old, Embarrassing Tweets?

Social Media Site Twitter Debuts On The New York Stock Exchange
In this photo illustration, The Twitter logo is displayed on a mobile device as the company announced it's initial public offering and debut on the New York Stock Exchange on November 7, 2013 in London, England. Bethany Clarke—Getty Images

Twitter just made it easier than ever for anyone to find all your tweets

Twitter just made its search tool more powerful than ever. The social network has now made it easy to search any of the 500 billion public tweets that have been sent in Twitter’s eight-year history. Yes, that includes your tweets—even the drunk ones.

If you’re nervous about what an Internet sleuth might uncover if they searched for all your references to “weed” or a comprehensive listing of your embarrassing unanswered pleas directly to a celebrity, you might want to review your old tweets and delete the bad apples. And remember, if you ever become famous, someone will inevitably dig up all those racist tweets you sent in 2010.

Here’s how to head off your future PR nightmare at the pass:

Option 1: Request Your Twitter Archive

Before today, the best way to take stock of your Twitter past was to request your personal archive from the social network. Twitter will email you a zip file that includes all your tweets in an easily searchable database that mimics the Twitter.com interface. Just type in any questionable words you might have used in your younger days (“drunk,” “high,” “hella” ) and delete anything you wouldn’t want your Mom to read or embed on a public web page for the whole Internet to see.

To get the archive, go to your Settings and click “Request your archive.”

Option 2: Use Advanced Search

If you don’t want to wait around for Twitter to send you your archive, you can use the Advanced Search option (here) to quickly parse through your tweets. In the “From These Accounts” field, enter your username, and in the “Words” fields, enter whatever terms you’re trying to find that you previously tweeted.

Retweet the ones where you accurately predicted the future. Delete the incriminating ones.

Option 3: Scorch the Earth

You were a different person when you joined Twitter. If you were below the age of 20, it’s possible that you said so many cruel, vapid and ignorant things that there is simply no salvaging your younger digital self. You can wipe this person from Twitter’s record with a few clicks. Tweet Delete lets you automatically delete tweets more than a year old on an ongoing basis. Tweet Eraser allows you to delete everything you wrote before any given date. For more dire situations, you can download Tweeticide and erase your entire Twitter history.

Not sure whether you should delete or tweet? Consider this: Every public tweet is being archived for future generations to make judgments about our culture in the Library of Congress. Don’t make us look bad.

TIME Companies

You Can Now Search Every Tweet Ever

The Twitter logo and hashtag '#Ring!' is displayed on a mobile device.
The Twitter logo and hashtag '#Ring!' is displayed on a mobile device. Bethany Clarke—Getty Images

Archive of 500 billion tweets are now searchable

Time to start deleting your embarrassing old tweets—Twitter just made it easy to search every public tweet ever sent.

The social network announced Tuesday that it has completed indexing of every public tweet since 2006, which amounts to about half a trillion messages. A new, more powerful search function will let users search for specific words used by specific users, hashtags used between a set of given dates and other variables. In the past, these types of searches only yielded a portion of the tweets that fit the criteria.

“Our search engine excelled at surfacing breaking news and events in real time, and our search index infrastructure reflected this strong emphasis on recency,” Twitter wrote in a blog post that explains the indexing process for tweets in extreme detail. “But our long-standing goal has been to let people search through every Tweet ever published.”

The more robust archive will eventually affect the basic searches that Twitter users conduct from the site’s homepage. While basic searches currently surface tweets from the last several hours or days as “Top” tweets, the company will soon begin showing older tweets that may also be relevant. Getting people conducting Twitter searches more regularly could boost the company’s revenue, as Twitter already sells ads against keyword searches.

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