The Indonesian government will add six more helicopters to the fleet of aircraft engaged in the search for the Adam Air Boeing 737-400 jetliner which went missing with 102 people on board six days ago on a flight from Surabaya to Manado, Vice President Jusuf Kalla said.
"We are going to work efficiently until we find the missing plane. Therefore, I ask the families of those on the plane not to be dismayed but remain patient," Antara news agency on Sunday quoted Kalla as saying in Makassar, capital of South Sulawesi province.
The six additional helicopters would be operated on Sunday at three locations, namely, the districts of Polewali Mandar and Mamuju in West Sulawesi and Rantepao in Tanah Toraja district, South Sulawesi, Kala said Saturday evening.
So far, the joint search and rescue teams had been using at least four military planes, a Puma helicopter, a Singaporean Air Force Fokker-50 and a number of navy ships in the search for the ill-fated jetliner which disappeared on January 1, less than three days after a ferry with more than 600 people on board sank in the Java Sea.
The teams were also supported by three warships which had combed the waters off South Sulawesi, West Sulawesi and Central Sulawesi.
Meanwhile, an 8-man U.S. investigating team arrived in Makassar on Saturday to work with the Indonesian transport safety commission to investigate various aspects of the missing plane case, including engineering, operations and weather that might have contributed to the plane's disappearance.
The vice president said the search for the missing Adam Air plane would continue until it was found, no matter how long it would take.
He said the search would not be halted regardless of the cost and even if it would take more than the standard seven days.