Air France announced it lost contact with an Airbus 330 carrying 228 people. The plane departed Rio de Janeiro and was headed to Paris; according to the AP, "The plane disappeared about 186 miles (300 kilometers) northeast of the coastal Brazilian city of Natal and near Fernando de Noronha." CNN reports that Brazil's air force has "launched a search near the archipelago of Fernando de Noronha in the Atlantic Ocean, 365 km (226 miles) from Brazil's coast." An Air France spokeswoman said, "Air France regrets to announce that it is without news from Air France flight 447 flying from Rio to Paris... Air France shares the emotion and worry of the families concerned." Additionally, CNN air travel expert Richard Quest weighed in, noting the plane's impeccable safety record, "It has very good range, and is extremely popular with airlines because of its versatility."