Flight 370

mha 370 fligthpath

Like John Hinderaker from whom I took this map, I have no idea about what happened but I am interested in what thoughts any of you might have. Until I saw the map I had no idea what a mystery it all is. Since there is almost certain loss of life I do not wish to take this in a light hearted way but the certainty is that the facts will be suppressed since someone is at fault who will try to fend off and deflect onto others whatever accusations that may eventually emerge.

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89 Responses to Flight 370

  1. Supplice

    Oh wait, thats me and firefox trying to be clever and failing. never mind

  2. Roberto

    This may all have been superseded by the Chinese satellite discovery of possible wreckage, in the general area where the plane was first thought to have gone down.

  3. Yohan

    There was an article in the media showing the scale of the problem. If the search area was the size of the Melbourne cricket ground, the crash debris would be a 5 cent coin.

  4. It was clear very early, that the main casualty of the…incident (passengers & crew excepted) was going to be Malaysia’s international reputation.

    The institutionalised Bungling Incompetence, Inertia, Nepotistic Hierarchy and Inepness is at all levels of every part of every arm of government.

    Malaysia: Laughing Stock.

  5. Supplice

    This may all have been superseded by the Chinese satellite discovery of possible wreckage, in the general area where the plane was first thought to have gone down.

    An area that had been already extensively searched, no less. Its all more than a little strange, the allegations of mobile phones being contactable, the Iranians on stolen passports (with changing skin colouration, no less), the co-pilot’s reported disregard for cockpit security procedures, etc. I don’t know what to make of it all. Early on I arrived at the mid-air exploding Muhammadean conclusion (surely it wouldn’t be that hard to find/infiltrate a sympathetic co-religionist in baggage handling in KL airport) but now I’m just confused with all the conflicting information. Also, slightly perplexed at the amount of time that newshounds have given the search effort – Air France 447 took 2 years to find, as an example. Just because there’s a 24/7 news cycle going doesn’t mean investigations (and this will almost certainly involve a criminal investigation into the airline and its culpability if any) can deliver new information to fill that cycle. I think best to not speculate and let the investigators get on with the job; not hounding them for tidbits.

  6. nic

    One thing that surprises me is not much is being said about the 5 pax who did not make the flight. Were their bags really removed?

    Anyway, this site has very good updates:
    http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/other-asian-australian-south-pacific-airlines/1558464-mh370-772-kul-pek-missing-1730-gmt-7-mar-2014-sar-underway-read-wiki-first-190.html

  7. Fisky

    Malaysia: Laughing Stock.

    That’s what happens when you build an entire country around the concept of affirmative action.

  8. In China, families of the lost have thrown bottles at staff offering comfort and screamed ”all Malaysians are liars!”.

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/national/confusion-over-missing-plane-has-shamed-malaysia-experts-20140312-34mqe.html#ixzz2voMjRsXJ

    Which is of course racist.

    Except that we pretend that Asians accusing other Asians is not racist.

  9. Fisky

    Pandering to Bumis and stroking their egos has been a destructive tendency in Malaysia. The sense of entitlement they have far outweighs the average ability of the population, while the Chinese are milked dry.

  10. James of the Glen

    This is looking more and more like the Flannan Isles mystery.

    First we have one description of the scene. Then along come highly dubious additions which sex up the story. Unfortunately the original log is piecemeal so doubts remain, despite the simplest hypothesis looking like it may be supported by discovery. But..

  11. Fisky

    Then there is the basic issue of competency. Malaysia has long promoted those with Malay ethnicity into the upper levels of the public service and state-owned corporations over the Chinese and Tamil minorities.

    ”The fact that they had to send junior staff to Beijing because no one in the senior ranks could speak Chinese says a lot,” she said. ”Twenty-three per cent of the population is Chinese.”
    One analyst, who asked not to be named, said the country was riven by cronyism and corruption.
    ”This country is not a meritocracy

    .”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/national/confusion-over-missing-plane-has-shamed-malaysia-experts-20140312-34mqe.html#ixzz2voNk5mEy

    Stupid Bumi cry-babies. They should all be sacked from their high positions and replaced by Chinese.

  12. One thing that surprises me is not much is being said about the 5 pax who did not make the flight. Were their bags really removed?

    In common with just about every other aspect of the story, the actual number of pax who did not board is also flexing from day to day.
    I think the current version is that there were Four pax who did not board.

    As to their luggage being removed? Waddaya reckon, being as nothing else has been done properly?

  13. Honesty

    I posted on the Monday thread what I deduced has happened and it looks, so far, to be right. If you want the good oil and comprehensive coverage pro Pilots Rumour Blog is excellent.

  14. Ant

    Air Crash Investigation is one of my favourite TV programs.

    Having watched dozens of these programs, and understanding likelihoods based on those programs (it’s thin, I know), I’d bet that one of the pilots (more likely, rather than both, or one pilot with an accomplice(s) on board) hijacked the plane for some motive – possibly terrorism, revenge or profit.

    It is also possible that having seized the plane, something went wrong with the ‘plan’.

  15. Fisky

    In common with just about every other aspect of the story, the actual number of pax who did not board is also flexing from day to day.
    I think the current version is that there were Four pax who did not board.

    Reading, spelling and distinguishing between big numbers such as “4″ and “5″ are huge cognitive challenges for the average Bumi. I don’t think they are quite up to it. Luckily, they can hire Chinese consultants to teach them these things, while still keeping their very important sounding positions.

  16. Infidel Tiger

    That’s what happens when you build an entire country around the concept of affirmative action.

    Modern day America.

  17. Harry Buttle

    It seems unlikely to me that the Malaysians pickup up a large radar return, with no comms and no transponder and didn’t scramble fighters to check it out given that they have an airbase at Butterworth in Penang.

    Nor do they seem to have passed any info on the contact to either the Indonesians or the Thais, either of whom could have been affected by an off course or “rogue” aircraft in the area.

  18. Reading, spelling and distinguishing between big numbers such as “4″ and “5″ are huge cognitive challenges for the average Bumi.

    Most departments or companies have a CEO who has a name like: Mohamed bin Aziz.
    … and the 2-i-c will have a name like: Chee Hock Tong.

    There is a reason for this.

  19. egg_

    the allegations of mobile phones being contactable

    Disproven by the FBI at the Moussaoui (911 Pentagon) trial, despite what the Popular Mechanics tards would have you believe.

  20. Fisky

    Most departments or companies have a CEO who has a name like: Mohamed bin Aziz.
    … and the 2-i-c will have a name like: Chee Hock Tong.

    There is a reason for this.

    Right. Mr Aziz’s JD consists of snoozing all day, surfing the net for porn, all taking a sneaky nip of scotch under the table. Mr Chee’s responsibility is to do Mr Aziz’s actual work.

  21. Fisky

    that should be “all the time taking…”

  22. nic

    It seems unlikely to me that the Malaysians pickup up a large radar return, with no comms and no transponder and didn’t scramble fighters to check it out given that they have an airbase at Butterworth in Penang.

    Nor do they seem to have passed any info on the contact to either the Indonesians or the Thais, either of whom could have been affected by an off course or “rogue” aircraft in the area.

    It after 5 lah.

    Fisky is correct about the Bumiputra malaise. However, imagine a place that’s even more endemically rooted than Malaysia despite the lovely people there, the Philippines.

  23. Myrddin Seren

    Twenty-three per cent of the population is Chinese.

    And suffers active discrimination relative to the Malays.

    So – once the Obama administration has finished neutering the US military and retreated back from the Western Pacific, China can safely assert itself in protecting the rights of ethnic Chinese in Malaysia.

    The Bumis might want to have a hard think about their strategic position in Asia if Barack calls the troops home.

  24. egg_

    Air Crash Investigation is one of my favourite TV programs.

    As in most risk management, IIRC by rank:

    1. Human error
    2. Conditions
    3. Equipment failure

  25. So – once the Obama administration has finished neutering the US military and retreated back from the Western Pacific, China can safely assert itself in protecting the rights of ethnic Chinese in Malaysia.

    The Bumis might want to have a hard think about their strategic position in Asia if Barack calls the troops home

    Nah, the bumis are muslim.

  26. Combine Dave

    1. Human error

    Includes passengers with explosive personalities/baggage?

  27. Mike of Marion

    Myrddin Seren
    #1223045, posted on March 13, 2014 at 3:13 pm
    “…

    So – once the Obama administration has finished neutering the US military and retreated back from the Western Pacific, China can safely assert itself in protecting the rights of ethnic Chinese in Malaysia.

    …”
    So does Boeing have enough money to replace these???

    http://englishrussia.com/2014/03/11/two-military-surveillance-drones-reportedly-shot-down-in-crimea-video/

  28. Myrddin Seren

    Mike

    I am betting that Boeing will cheerfully keep banging out the drones if the US taxpayer keeps writing cheques for them.

  29. egg_

    Includes passengers with explosive personalities/baggage?

    Rather a low ranking?
    How many featured on said program?

  30. Baldrick

    A greater mystery than the disappearance of Flight 370 is why people insist on using the word pax on website comments. It’s not as if space is a premium.

  31. Combine Dave

    includes passengers with explosive personalities/baggage?

    Rather a low ranking?
    How many featured on said program?

    I was implying that this was included in the item 1: human error item (not as a stand alone) :P

    In this case it does not appear to be weather related, both pilots were apparently experienced and the airline has a good safety (maintenance) reputation.

    There are a number of strange facts surrounding the case; dodgy passports, passengers leaving the plane before it’s doomed flight, reckless co-pilot, multiple pieces of incorrect info about where the flight was last detected by Malaysia authorities…

    Sadly until the USA, China or Australia find their plane for them we won’t get to know the cause.

    After so many false starts I am not sure if this is promising or not:

    Chinese believe crash caught on Satellite image.
    http://www.boston.com/news/source/2014/03/report_china_satellite_images_may_show_malaysia_flight_crash.html

    Kiwi believes he saw fiery explosion of said flight:
    http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/kiwi-reports-seeing-malaysia-airlines-flight-go-down-5863974

  32. Steve the Postie

    Air France 447 took 2 years to find, as an example.

    Not exaclty true!

    The site of the crash was identified within five days and some wreckage was removed by the Brazilian Navy

    The blackbox and remaining wreckage wasn’t found on the ocean floor until two years later.

  33. vlad

    My guess is it was an accident, and everything else connected with it is happenstance.

  34. FM

    It might pay to remember that the responsibility for the air defence of the Malay peninsular falls under the Five Power Defence Agreement and that the permanent headquarters for the Integrated Air Defence System is commanded by an Australian with a Malaysian deputy. I can’t remember exactly whether that headquarters is permanently responsible for monitoring the airspace, but headquarters itself and the people based at Butterworth are definitely permanent.

    So don’t laugh too hard about the morons who lost track of the aircraft. It could have been us.

  35. Hypoxia disabling the passengers and crew is the most likely explanation if the plane just kept flying. Can happening quickly and subtly see http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-409703/Ghost-flight-horror-crash-blamed-pilots.html

  36. nic

    Dave, apparently the Chinese have back tracked on their claim

  37. egg_

    I was implying that this was included in the item 1: human error item (not as a stand alone)

    Yeah, I hoped it was a joke, Dave (but good point) and have read both articles (that appear to agree) thanks.
    The Military Radar story looks to be a (inadvertent?) red herring.

  38. This sounds like a Tom Clancy novel, with the conspiracies replaced by incompetence. The most fascinating possibility is the one where it flew back over and beyond Malaysia to end up in some unknown airfield bordering the Indian Ocean, although it shouldn’t be difficult to disprove. If the sheep shagger truly saw a large plane in flames at low altitude, the search area can’t be that big, and with the water quite shallow…

    Either way, the Malaysians are screwing up and trying to cover their arses. Truth is indeed stranger than fiction and the truth may be stranger than our imaginings. Or not.

  39. Combine_Dave

    Dave, apparently the Chinese have back tracked on their claim

    I can’t imagine what it would be like to be have had a family member on this flight and to hear the constant incorrect leads about what happened and where the plane is.

    Enough to make you stick to flying only QANTAS Singapore Airlines.

  40. egg_

    Either way, the Malaysians are screwing up and trying to cover their arses.

    The only ‘known’ thus far. ;)

  41. Enough to make you stick to flying only QANTAS Singapore Airlines.

    Only if you’re at an airport which doesn’t have a parallel runway out of action with construction equipment on it.

    And if that airport has no ground radar, and there is driving rain so heavy that visibility is down to a few hundred metres.

    The other notable thing about that crash: Only those in the front part of the airliner survived. Put that in your pipes & smoke it, you jokers who make endless Sir Les Paterson style jokes about how you sit up the back because no aircraft has “gone backward into a mountain, haw haw haw, guffaw!”

  42. nic

    Only if you’re at an airport which doesn’t have a parallel runway out of action with construction equipment on it.

    Yep, people forget that one.

  43. A Lurker

    This is a great blog to read.

    I feel for the family and friends of the missing – not having any sort of closure would be so hard to take.

  44. A Lurker

    The institutionalised Bungling Incompetence, Inertia, Nepotistic Hierarchy and Ineptness is at all levels of every part of every arm of government.

    Add to it the cultural Asian requirement for ‘Saving-Face’.

  45. nic

    Boeing officials and a Malaysia Airlines official declined to comment.
    The engines’ onboard monitoring system is provided by their manufacturer, Rolls-Royce PLC, and it periodically sends bursts of data about engine health, operations and aircraft movements to facilities on the ground.
    Rolls-Royce couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.
    As part of its maintenance agreements, Malaysia Airlines transmits its engine data live to Rolls-Royce for analysis. The system compiles data from inside the 777′s two Trent 800 engines and transmits snapshots of performance, as well as the altitude and speed of the jet.
    Those snippets are compiled and transmitted in 30-minute increments, said one person familiar with the system. According to Rolls-Royce’s website, the data is processed automatically “so that subtle changes in condition from one flight to another can be detected.”
    The engine data is being analyzed to help determine the flight path of the plane after the transponders stopped working. The jet was originally headed for China, and its last verified position was half way across the Gulf of Thailand.

  46. Woolfe

    And there is of course the religious aspect.

  47. Leigh Lowe

    Air Crash Investigation is one of my favourite TV programs.

    As in most risk management, IIRC by rank:

    1. Human error
    2. Conditions
    3. Equipment failure

    I note a number of commenters here yesterday were basically saying they wouldn’t fly with anyone but an Eton educated Capt Bigglesworth or Douglas Bader.
    Now I don’t necessarily subscribe to that theory, but one of the common causes of prangs cited on Air Crash Investgation is more correctly characterised as Human Factors rather than Human Error.
    That is, where the crew is all drawn from the same hierarchical culture, resulting in the 2-I-C allowing the jet to crash and burn rather than query his superior in the left-hand seat.

  48. nic

    And there is of course the religious aspect.

    Oh come now what aspect could that possibly be? Oh wait…

  49. Mayan

    Given the dissembling BS from the officials, perhaps the possibility that they shot it down can’t be ruled out.

  50. Mayan

    About the SQ parallel runway crash: my recollection is that there was no barrier to entering that runway and the runway lights were left on, despite that runway being out of commission. The pilots make a boo-boo, but the airport management really should have worn more of the blame. If a runway is having major work done to it, the logical thing is to preclude access to the runway.

  51. candy

    The complete lack of communication with the plane right from the start was very perplexing. How do you find a plane with no communication until it goes to ground.

  52. About the SQ parallel runway crash: my recollection is that there was no barrier to entering that runway and the runway lights were left on, despite that runway being out of commission.

    It was in the middle of the grandfather of all deluges. You couldn’t see a thing – the pilots saw a sign that said “Thisaway to the runway” & followed it.
    The Tower was unable to see the aircraft at all.

  53. egg_

    Human Factors

    Sounds like sanitisation to save face.
    ‘Error of judgement’ is an error, nonetheless.

  54. Uh oh

    Wall Street Journal is reporting that engine data transmitted to Boeing shows that the plane flew for an extra 4 hours after its last reported position.

  55. Yair @ Uh oh. Wonder if that transmission would continue if the engines were on the sea floor? Rolls Royce are no doubt right now having a real good look at the data received – with some adults (ie. non-Malaysian) investigators assisting/waiting.

  56. candy

    Wall Street Journal is reporting that engine data transmitted to Boeing shows that the plane flew for an extra 4 hours after its last reported position.

    In it’s flight path, or can’t they tell?

  57. Uh oh

    Good point Steve at the Pub. I have no idea how these things work so I’ll leave it to the adults for further comment. Interesting though, isn’t it.

  58. egg_

    the plane flew for an extra 4 hours after its last reported position.

    Lends more weight to a hypoxia theory (e.g. Payne Stewart).

  59. Supplice

    I note a number of commenters here yesterday were basically saying they wouldn’t fly with anyone but an Eton educated Capt Bigglesworth or Douglas Bader.

    Bader crashed and didn’t walk away from it…

  60. Leigh Lowe

    Bader crashed and didn’t walk away from it…

    Only once.
    He was the Oscar Pistorius of the RAF (except for the shooting the girlfriend thing).

  61. Walter Plinge

    Now I don’t necessarily subscribe to that theory, but one of the common causes of prangs cited on Air Crash Investgation is more correctly characterised as Human Factors rather than Human Error. That is, where the crew is all drawn from the same hierarchical culture, resulting in the 2-I-C allowing the jet to crash and burn rather than query his superior in the left-hand seat.

    Cockpit Resource Management did away with that 20 years ago. All the world’s major airlines use CRM these days (except perhaps a few Russian and African one). The last crash attributed (partly) to a lack of CRM was Flash Airlines flight 604 in 2004. Flash was supposed to have introduced CRM but failed to do it.

  62. Leigh Lowe

    Enough to make you stick to flying only QANTAS / Singapore Airlines.

    Only if you’re at an airport which doesn’t have a parallel runway out of action with construction equipment on it.

    Or only when you are not on the QF jet when the Captain and First Officer can’t agree on whether they are landing or going around.
    An internal QF source at the time told me that, to all intents and purposes, the aircraft was a write-off, but Qantas wanted to keep their safety record intact by having it called an “Incident” rather than an “Accident”. They recovered a handful of undamaged rivets and re-built the whole plane around those so they could say it was an “Incident” and had been repaired.
    Cost them a shitload more than just writing it off.

  63. Indigo

    The closest parallel to this disappearance in the recent past is Lockerbie. A catastrophic event occasioned by a bomb. In the case of Lockerbie, the explosion and disintegration was see on radar. There was of course no communication from the aircraft.

    Too early to draw any conclusions, but I am not aware of any other catastrophic break ups of aircraft without intervention by explosives or missiles (Korean Air shot down by Russians) since the Comet 1 breaks due to metal fatigue.

    They might start to look at large potential insurance payouts on passengers.

    Air France in the South Atlantic did not break up until it hit the water. This was pilot inability to deal with a certain situation caused by icing. Wikipedia has an informative entry on this and Lockerbie.

  64. Or only when you are not on the QF jet when the Captain and First Officer can’t agree on whether they are landing or going around.
    An internal QF source at the time told me that…….

    Got the same story Leigh Lowe, likewise from an internal QF source. Furthermore there was “quite a big got said” about the manner in which the evacuation of the passengers was handled.

    It should have been a near-textbook case of “this is the procedure ladies & gentlemen – and now we all go down the chutes in an orderly fashion”. There was apparently quite a deal of remedial training re cabin crew emergency procedures.

  65. Botswana O'Hooligan

    We have to remember that an accident just usually doesn’t happen all of a sudden, especially in aeroplanes, more particularly in modern jet aeroplanes. This particular aeroplane had all the mod cons, ACARS, ADS-B, TCAS, the acronyms are Aircraft communications addressing and reporting system, Automatic dependent surveillance broadcast system, Terrain and collision avoidance system, and all in the normal course of events do their thing and tell all and sundry where the aeroplane is “at” and what it is doing. Someone either turned those systems to “off” either by hand or by a bloody big explosion from an infernal machine, and until they find the cockpit voice recorder, the flight data recorder, but more importantly, the flight data recorder since it is possible for someone to place a thumb or finger over the CVR microphone/s and thus muffle any conversation, no one will know what happened.

  66. Supplice

    Yeah Leigh, I know. A lame joke on my part. I read Bader’s biography as a schoolboy; he was something of a hero to me.

    Oh god, a lame joke. Pun not intended.

  67. Leo G

    Wall Street Journal is reporting that engine data transmitted to Boeing shows that the plane flew for an extra 4 hours after its last reported position.

    So, the plane remained in the air until it ran out of fuel? So, conceivably it could have gone down anywhere within 2000km of its last reported position.
    The oil rig worker’s observation is irrelevant.
    The random path hypothesis doesn’t seem very healthy.
    Deliberate evasion of primary radar, VHF groundstations and ground-based observers remains a possibility.
    The hypoxia hypothesis is still a possibility if linked with failure of HF Comms and satcom and a deliberate change of course.

  68. So, the plane remained in the air until it ran out of fuel? So, conceivably it could have gone down anywhere within 2000km of its last reported position.

    Perhaps not quite LeoG. The flight was to be 7 hours. It would seem the engines reported to Rolls Royce for Five hours after take-off.
    But yeah, the beast could have hit the deck anywhere in a several thousand km radius.

    The data from Rolls Royce is likely the only reliable reports we’ll have unless the wreck is found. Malaysia can barely tell us what time the flight departed, never mind harder details like, who was on board, which direction the plane turned after it got off the runway, what aerobatics it may have performed after the pilots got homesick & turned back to overfly the Malay peninsula, etc.

  69. Of course this begs the question of Tony Abbott’s role in all that.

  70. Leigh Lowe

    Cockpit Resource Management did away with that 20 years ago. All the world’s major airlines use CRM these days (except perhaps a few Russian and African one). The last crash attributed (partly) to a lack of CRM was Flash Airlines flight 604 in 2004

    Theoretically, yes, but it takes more than 3 days CRM training to wash away an entire childhood of conditioning.
    And the CRM didn’t go so well under pressure on Air France 447, did it?
    I admit that AF447 wasn’t a classic case of the co-pilot meekly surrendering to the will of the Captain, but they broke one of the most basic rules of two pilot operations. That is, they did not make clear to each other who was in control, resulting in them putting contrary inputs in via their respective sidesticks – one pushing forward the other pushing back. The computer basically gave up and said “I’ll wait until you two fuckers work this out”. They never did.
    I did a little flying in my yoof and, whenever there were two licensed people up front, the conventions of “handing over – taking over” had to be strictly observed, or someone was up for a smack in the debrief.

  71. Botswana O'Hooligan

    Bearing in mind the RR engine data for four hours after the supposed failure and the fact that RMAF radar painted something to the west at about 29,000′ brings to mind that RVSM airspace starts at FL290 but no jet aeroplane usually frequents that level except on climb or descent so anyone who wanted to cruise at that altitude would be reasonably sure of not hitting oncoming traffic they could no longer detect if the TCAS and transponder was turned “Off.” Someone might remember what the PLFP did with the jets in the desert, was it Jordan, and then work out a circle of probability using the fuel burn at FL290 as against what was in the tanks. The RR data would show fuel burn and other stuff to enable a reasonably close calculation.

  72. Myrddin Seren

    They might start to look at large potential insurance payouts on passengers.

    I pity folk from bureaucratic, paperwork-driven countries like Australia when it finally comes to starting to officially declare the missing as ‘no more’. Especially that young mum in WA whose hubby was on FIFO to Mongolia.

    Imagine the shambles at Centrelink, Medicare, AEC etc etc, to say nothing of insurance companies.

    “My < insert dear departed > is dead !”

    “How so ?”

    “MH370 !”

    “Prove there is no MH370 ?”

    “the plane is lost and < dear departed > was on it !”

    “Prove Dear Departed was on it – that flight was a shambles in terms of check-in and security protocols !”

    Right now these poor souls are in a legal netherworld and their relos will have hell to deal with for months if not years. Lawyers should get a good ten years or so of work out of it though.

  73. Leo G

    The flight was to be 7 hours. It would seem the engines reported to Rolls Royce for Five hours after take-off

    Yes. Kuala Lumpur to Beijing distance is about 4300km, so allowing for reserve the potential range is considerably more than 2000km. Flight 370 could have covered more than half the distance to Mt Kilimanjaro from its last crew-reported position.
    What’s the normal cruising speed at 29000 ft?

  74. Ranga

    Isn’t it obvious????
    2 Iranians seeking asylum are killed.
    I think we should be asking where were Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison last Saturday morning??
    And why didn’t the Australian Navy save them??

    I am sure GrowUp will be organising a candle light thingy any day now.

  75. Arnost

    The data from Rolls Royce

    The data from RR originally said they had two reports from the engines: One at take-off and one when the plane reached altitude and the engines were throttled back…

    So there are conflicting reports (again!)

    But then – if the plane crashed / disintegrated where last contact was made, I’m sure it would have been found by now. So it is possible that the plane is down somewhere else (either at an airport or crashed).

    And this begs the question: What was the plane carrying? It may have been carrying something that exploded and disabled the coms / poisoned the crew (possible)… or it may have been something valuable that was James Bonded (unlikely but out there with terrorism).

  76. egg_

    The flight was to be 7 hours. It would seem the engines reported to Rolls Royce for Five hours after take-off

    Even in the case of hypoxia, the plane may have run out of altitude before running out of fuel?

  77. Leigh Lowe

    Isn’t it obvious????
    2 Iranians seeking asylum are killed.
    I think we should be asking where were Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison last Saturday morning??

    Not so.
    I think you’ll find that it was The Lying Slapper who proposed “the Malaysian Solution”.
    I am shocked to find that this is what she meant.

  78. sabrina

    WSJ citing Rolls Royce is suggesting that the plane may have flown for 4-5 hours after disappearing from the radar. That might mean the pilots were incapacitated for some reason (possibly lack of oxygen) and not able to control the plane or communicate. This means the plane may have run out fuel , 7 hours worth it started with. Windscreen damage at the cockpit?

    I suspect the passengers may have succumbed to oxygen deprivation as well, and that might have happened due to mechanical or electronic failure. Improper maintenance? A known fault in 777s aggravated during the flight? Who knows? having said that, why did the transponders fail? Or were those deactivated?

    One has to feel sad for the passengers and the families they left behind. Their life will be forever different. Hopefully all stakeholders (aircraft manufacturer, airlines, maintenance authorities, immigration/security) all learn from this accident.

  79. Hopefully all stakeholders ….. learn from this accident.

    It is only an accident if it transpires there is no religious aspect to the disappearance.

  80. entropy

    Sabrina, if it kept flying after the transponders were turned off, then it ain’t no accident

  81. entropy

    We need to find out if the rolls Royce story is true.

  82. Tom

    This story hasn’t yet been carried by a reputable news source, but it’s out there:

    A missing Malaysian airliner kept flying after it dropped off controllers’ radar screens, raising new questions about whether foul play was involved, according to people familiar with data gathered in the inquiry.

    Aviation specialists investigating last week’s loss of Flight 370 say evidence gathered so far suggests that the plane traveled west over Malaysia, possibly continuing for hours, according to the people, who asked not to be identified discussing an active probe. One person said U.S. investigators increasingly suspect the act was criminal, without elaborating.

    The latest evidence adds a new note of mystery to the disappearance of the Malaysian Airline System Bhd. plane carrying 239 people that vanished while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. Data compiled so far show no evidence of a crash near the Malaysian peninsula, the people said.

    Radar signals sent from the ground continued to reflect back from the plane after its transponder went dead as the aircraft headed north from Malaysia toward Vietnam, said the people, who weren’t permitted to speak publicly about the probe. After the transponder shut off, making it harder to follow on radar, the plane turned left toward the west instead of continuing on its path.

    An automatic system that sends data about the health of the plane’s engines may also have continued to function, indicating that the aircraft was being operated intentionally, the people said. That suggests the Boeing Co. (BA) 777-200 may have been flown off course with the intent to fly undetected, by the pilots or hijackers.

  83. Tom

    Sorry — I somehow cited the wrong story. Grappling with a new system.

  84. mundi

    The thing about the engines is: It did not transmit engine data after it went missing, only before it went missing.

    WHen it wants to send data it transmits a burst to a satellite to try and claim a comms frequency. The satellite recorded pings that may have come from the plan after it went missing, or may not have. It may well prove impossible to tell until they have ACARS data from every other plan that would have transmitted at the same time.

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