The search for the turboprop plane, owned by the Aviastar Mandiri airline, was focusing on the sea near Bone Gulf, the large inlet between the two southern peninsulas of Sulawesi Island, said Henry Bambang Soelistyo, the head of Indonesia's National Search and Rescue Agency.
    
Three military aircraft, a search and rescue helicopter and two similar Twin Otter planes owned by the airline and four patrol boats joining today's search operation.
    
The DHC-5 Twin Otter plane lost contact with air traffic controllers 11 minutes after taking off in good weather Friday from Masamba in South Sulawesi province.
    
It was on a routine flight to Makassar, the provincial capital, carrying three crew members and seven passengers, including three children. No distress signal was received.
    
Weekend search efforts were hindered by bad weather and rough terrain, Soelistyo said. Rescuers have checked locations reportedly by the locals, but they were found nothing.

 

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