BANGKOK – Lion Air, the airline whose plane crashed early Monday while traveling from Jakarta to an island off Indonesia’s Sumatra with 189 people on board, is a fast-growing low-cost airline with a mixed safety record.
The privately owned carrier was founded in 1999 to provide access to air travel to everyone. It offers dozens of flights a day both internationally and within the archipelago’s more than 17,000 islands.
The biggest airline in the country in terms of passenger numbers and one of the largest low-cost carriers after Malaysia-based AirAsia, it mostly flies Boeing 737s.
Before Monday’s crash, the airline had not reported a fatal accident since 2004, when 25 people died when the DC-9 they were on crashed amid heavy rain at Solo City in central Java.
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