12 survive Indonesian plane crash, airline says

Twelve people survived an Indonesian jetliner crash that killed 90 others when it went down over the mountainous region of Indonesia's Sulawesi island, the airline says.

Twelve people survived an Indonesian jetliner crash that killed 90 others when it went down during a storm over the mountainous region of Indonesia's Sulawesi island, the airline says.

Rescue teams found the smouldering wreckage of the Boeing 737-400 jetliner Tuesday, which had been carrying 102 people on a domestic flight from Java island to Sulawesi.

"The plane is destroyed and many bodies are around there," said local police Chief Col. Genot Hariyanto.

Navy rear commander Eddy Suyanto told El-Shinta radio that Adam Air Flight KI-574 had crashed in a mountainous region in West Sulawesi province.

Adam Air spokesman Hartonom, who, like many Indonesians, goes by just one name, said 90 people were killed and that there were 12 survivors.Officials said rescuers were trying to help remove survivors from the crash site, but there was no immediate word on their condition.

Earlier, two distress calls had been received from Adam Air Flight KI-574, which was on a two-hour flight from Indonesia's main island of Java to Manado, on the northern tip of Sulawesi.

Distress calls first picked up over Sulawesi

Transport Minister Hatta Radjasa said the first distress signal from the plane was picked up over Sulawesi, about 750 kilometres southwest of Manado. The second was detected over Majene, a coastal city 885 kilometres southwest of Manado, another aviation official said, adding to confusion as to whether it disappeared over land or sea.

The 17-year-old plane carried six crew and 96 passengers, including 11 children. Contact was lost about an hour before it was due to land, said national aviation chief Ichsan Tatang.

Hundreds of people gathered at the airport in Manado seeking information about their missing relatives.

Some collapsed when they heard the news 90 people had died, while others angrily banged on the door of the Adam Air office, demanding information, witnesses said.

"I have heard on the television that 12 people survived, I just hope that one of them is my father," said Ridwan Lamani.

Justin Tumurang's twin sister was on the plane.

"Being a twin, we share almost every feeling. I felt something was not right and it grew worse."

"Now I feel pain," she said.

Adam Air, a privately owned low-cost airline, began operations in Indonesia several years ago and most of its flights are domestic.

Last year, one of its jetliners lost all communication and navigation systems for four hours during a flight between the Indonesian capital Jakarta and Makassar on Sulawesi Island forcing the pilot to make an emergency landing.

The transport minister said at the time he would investigate.

With files from the Associated Press