The head of the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 has raised the possibility that no wreckage from the passenger jet may ever be found, revealing authorities have a very poor understanding about how fast or far it travelled.
Speaking to media on Tuesday, Air Chief Marshal (rtd) Angus Houston compared the search for the aircraft to the disappearance of HMAS Sydney, which took 60 years to locate.
“We have a starting point and we need to pursue the search with vigour and we need to do that for some time to come,” the former head of Australia's Defence Forces said.
“Inevitably, if we don't find wreckage on the surface, we are eventually going to have to, probably, in consultation with everybody who has a stake in this, review what we do next.”
Hopes of a breakthrough had been raised after the Australian Maritime Safety Authority revealed a new search area about 1100 kilometres north-east of the previous zones on Friday after analysis that the plane had been travelling faster than previously thought, and would therefore have burnt more fuel and crashed earlier...
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The Malaysian authorities have released the transcript of the pilot - air traffic controller communications up to the last one, when Flight 370 was handed from Malaysian to Vietnamese airspace an 1:19 am
Another interview, with a former National Transportation Safety Board (USA) investigator, who also wonders if the wreckage will ever be found:
“I hope I am wrong but I personally don’t believe we will ever find the wreckage. I think we will find pieces that drifted,” Greg Feith, the investigator, said in an exclusive interview with Leeham News and Comment.Also, IATA [International Air Transport Association] task force to explore live data streaming: IATA director general Tony Tyler says that the loss of an aircraft such as Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 must never happen again, and that live streaming of data is something that needs to be seriously examined.
“I don’t believe the information that’s available right now, as I know it and has been publicized, will be enough to come up with a single cause or probable cause,” he said in an interview March 31.
Feith believes there will be several plausible theories that all will point to a deliberate act by someone with intimate knowledge of flying the Boeing 777, most likely one of the pilots.
Too many deliberate actions maneuvering the airplane and turning off communications systems occurred to have any plausible mechanical failure explanation. He completely discounts theories that a fire, either in the electronics bay or involving lithium-ion batteries being transported in a cargo bay, disabled the airplane.
He also discounts a theory that there was a depressurization that incapacitated the pilots and allowed the 777 to meander over the skies of the Gulf of Thailand, Malaysia and the Strait of Malacca before turning south 3,000 miles over the Indian Ocean before running out of fuel.
“When you look at the way the systems shut down just prior to the last communications—the transponder, then ACARS…” and the fact that ACARS had “pinging” communication with satellites after the transmission of data stopped, tells this veteran investigator that human intervention was responsible.
Feith believes that all the turns were part of a deception plan by whoever was in control of the airplane. He doubts this person was a hijacker, who wouldn’t have the knowledge or the skill level of all the systems of the 777, nor a hijacker holding a gun to the head of the pilots.
"This can't happen again," said Tyler, speaking at a press conference on the sidelines of the IATA Ops conference in Kuala Lumpur. "It has never happened before, but we must ensure it never happens again."