Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014 with 239 people on board tragically remains missing. Several articles and a book have expressed many different unproven theories. No part of the aircraft has been officially found. The latest unproven theory, written by former Proteus Airlines CEO Marc Dugain and published by Paris Match, claims the the Boeing 777-200 ER may have been hijacked by a “remote control system” and possibly shot down by U.S. forces near Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean. The U.S. has denied the aircraft came down near the British island.
Google Maps: Diego Garcia in the lonely Indian Ocean. A close-up of the British island below.
Read the full story from France 24: CLICK HERE
On November 10, 2014 Malaysia Airlines issued this statement (the last statement from the airline on MH 370):
Malaysia Airlines refers to recent news articles speculating on an official declaration of loss of flight MH 370.
Addressing the speculation to family members via letters, the airline highlighted that any course of action is always guided by the advice of the technical team in charge of the search operations.
The assurances given to us are that the ongoing search and recovery operations will remain and will not be discontinued.
Recent speculation in the press regarding a declaration of loss followed the expression of a personal opinion only. Any information regarding MH 370, the search and recovery operations and any matters related to the missing aircraft will only be communicated by the Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC).
Malaysia Airlines is hopeful that we will find closure to this tragedy and we support and thank our government as well as the governments of Australia and China for their invaluable assistance in this time of crisis.
The airline shares the pain and anguish of family members in having to deal and come to terms with this situation, as such we have assured them that locating the aircraft and recovering the flight data recorders remain the key priority. Every party involved in this complex operation is as determined as the families and Malaysia Airlines to find answers to our many questions.
With regard to the level of compensation available pursuant to the Montreal Convention, or similar applicable legal regime, the airline has made it very clear that payments are determined by law to take account of proven passenger and family circumstances and will be assessed accordingly.
Malaysia Airlines and its insurers remain steadfast to ensure that fair and reasonable compensation is paid to the families of all MH370 passengers in accordance with the law when the families are ready to discuss the issue. We have stated this publicly on many occasions and we reiterate that the airline will honour any commitments that we have made.
The well-being of the family members is always our main priority, and we will continue to communicate on any updates as and when we have them.
Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the families of passengers and crew of MH 370.
What do you think?
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Where is 9M-MRO? Missing Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) lands in Kuala Lumpur before the tragic disappearance.
Malaysia Airlines aircraft slide show:
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 of March 8 with 239 passengers and crew members on board remains missing. The next phase of the search is likely to move the search area several hundred miles to the south in the southern Indian Ocean.
The Associated Press first reported this change, citing Martin Dolan, chief commissioner of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB).
The Bluefin-21 will be redeployed in this new area. The exact new area is still being determined.
On May 26 Martin Dolan issued this statement about the search:
By Martin Dolan, Chief Commissioner
It’s now been more than 11 weeks since Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 disappeared from air traffic control radar after taking off from Kuala Lumpur on a scheduled passenger service to Beijing.
Despite one of the most intensive and coordinated air and sea search efforts ever undertaken, there has not yet been any sign of the missing aircraft.
The complexities surrounding the search cannot be understated. It involves vast areas of the Indian Ocean with only limited known data and aircraft flight information. While it is impossible to determine with certainty where the aircraft may have entered the water, all the available data indicates a highly probable search area close to a long but narrow arc of the southern Indian Ocean.
It is now highly unlikely that surface debris from the aircraft will be spotted. This means that the most effective way to continue the search is to look for MH370 under the water.
The search will be a major undertaking.
The complexities and challenges involved are immense, but not impossible.
Following an announcement by the Prime Minister of Australia in late April, and at the request of the Malaysian government, the ATSB is planning an intensified underwater search of a 60,000 square kilometre area—roughly the size of Tasmania.
As part of its search operations, the ATSB’s initial work involves:
reviewing existing information, from an expert satellite working group, to refine a search zone of up to 60,000 square kilometres in the southern Indian Ocean
conducting a bathymetric survey to map the search area
consulting with domestic and international authorities—including various oceanographic institutions and private companies—to prepare the plan and specialist services required for the next search phase.
The bathymetric survey— or mapping of the ocean floor— has already commenced, with the Chinese survey ship Zhu Kezhen conducting a survey of the areas provided by the ATSB. Zhu Kezhen will shortly be joined by a contracted commercial survey vessel in June. Taking around three months to complete, the bathymetric survey will give us crucial knowledge of the seafloor terrain needed to begin the underwater search.
The intensified underwater search will aim to locate the aircraft and any evidence (such as aircraft debris and flight recorders) to assist with the Malaysian investigation. The equipment used for the search will likely include a towed sonar, an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle with mounted sonar, and optical imaging equipment. We expect the search to begin in several months and take up to 12 months to complete.
The search will be a major undertaking. The complexities and challenges involved are immense, but not impossible. The best minds from around the world have been reviewing, refining and localising the most likely area where the aircraft entered the water, which is why we remain confident of finding the aircraft.
On May 26 the ATSB issued this detailed statement on the considerations of where it will search for MH 370:
At the request of the Malaysian Government, Australia is leading the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH 370 in the Indian Ocean. The search is a complex operation that involves vast areas with only limited data and aircraft flight information available.
Over-water aircraft accident locations are usually found by conducting a broad-area aerial search. The search area is generally determined by a combination of:
Position information from ground-based radar systems (maximum range is generally 250 NM)
Position information automatically transmitted from the aircraft at regular intervals
Position reports from the crew
Re-tracing the planned flight route
Eye-witness reports (possibly located on the shore, on other aircraft or on ships)
Uncertainty in the position of an accident location increases with time from the aircraft’s last known position (fix) so the search area will expand accordingly as the position data becomes ‘stale’.
Once floating wreckage is observed, reverse-drift techniques can be used to help determine the aircraft impact location. Only a small-area underwater search is then required to locate the wreckage and map the wreckage field. This underwater search can be aided by the underwater locator beacons fitted to flight recorders. As the beacons have a limited duration of nominally 30 days and to minimise the inaccuracies of the reverse-drift calculations, it is important that an aerial search is commenced as soon as possible and the floating debris is found quickly.
In the case of MH 370:
The aircraft departed Kuala Lumpur at 1641 UTC
The final automatically transmitted position from the aircraft occurred at 17:07 UTC
No radio communications were received from the crew after 17:19 UTC
The final ATC (secondary) radar fix occurred at 17:22 UTC
At 17:25 UTC the aircraft deviated from the planned flight route
The final primary radar fix occurred at 18:22 UTC
The satellite communications log indicated the aircraft continued to fly for another 6 hours
No confirmed eye-witness reports were received
The search in the Australian search and rescue zone commenced on 18 March (10 days after the aircraft went missing)
As a result, the search area for MH 370 has remained very large. A useful comparison is the search for Air France Flight 447 (AF 477), which crashed in the Atlantic Ocean on 1 June 2009. The AF447 aircraft was programmed to send its position automatically every 10 minutes, there were a number of fault messages transmitted via satellite during the last few minutes of flight and it was following the planned flight route. The search for the aircraft began on 1 June and the first surface wreckage was discovered on 6 June, 5 days after the accident. Given the relative accuracy of the aircraft’s last known position, a circular search area of 40 NM was defined (17,240 km²). After a search effort involving five separate phases, the aircraft wreckage was located on the ocean floor almost two years later.
As none of the traditional sources of data could be used to locate the aircraft wreckage from MH 370, it has been necessary to use novel sources of data and analysis techniques. This has led to a larger than typical search area; and there have been changes to its location as validation and calibration checks have been performed and the analysis is refined.
Determining the search area for MH 370
The flight path of MH 370 has three distinct sections; one under secondary radar in which the aircraft transponder was operational and ACARS messages were being transmitted, a primary radar section during which the aircraft was being tracked solely by air defence radar systems and the final stage for which the only information available was the satellite communications log data.
ACARS and radar data
The final ACARS transmission was at 17:07 UTC and provided location reports from the initial stage of the flight as well as a recording of the aircraft fuel remaining. The final secondary radar point was at approximately 17:22 UTC. The final primary radar point was at 18:22 UTC. Figure 1 shows the first and second sections of the flight.
Figure 1: MH 370 Flight path derived from Primary and Secondary radar data:
Satellite communications (SATCOM) data
Following the loss of primary radar, the only available information was from satellite signalling messages, also referred to as ‘handshakes’, between the ground station, the satellite and the aircraft’s satellite communication system.
For each transmission to the aircraft, the ground station recorded the burst timing offset (BTO) and the burst frequency offset (BFO).
Figure 2: Satellite communications schematic:
Burst Timing Offset (BTO)
The BTO is a measure of the time taken for a transmission round trip (ground station to satellite to aircraft and back) and allows a calculation of the distance between the satellite and the aircraft. Based on this measure, a possible location ring can be mapped on the surface of the earth (Figure 3). An analysis of SATCOM system parameters showed that the accuracy of the rings was ± 10 km. This analysis was validated using recorded BTO values from the initial stage of the flight when the aircraft’s position was known.
Figure 3: Satellite ring derivation:
There were 7 handshakes between the ground station and the aircraft after the loss of primary radar data. The location rings calculated from the recorded BTO values are shown in figure 4.
Figure 4: MH 370 timing (UTC) with corresponding rings arrowed:
Source: Inmarsat/Boeing /Google
The information from the BTO places the aircraft somewhere on each ring at the corresponding time. By taking the maximum speed of the aircraft into account, the rings can be reduced in length to arcs – there are some areas of the rings it simply could not have reached.
Burst Frequency Offset (BFO)
The BFO is the measure of the difference between the expected frequency of the transmission and the frequency received at the ground station. This difference is attributed to various sources including the Doppler Effect from the motion of the satellite and the aircraft, as well as some processing effects. Once the known components that contribute to the BFO are resolved, the remainder can be used to estimate the speed and direction of the aircraft. There are a large number of speeds and headings that can be consistent with a BFO recording. These are limited, however, by the operational constraints of the aircraft.
Candidate paths of different speeds were created which met the BTO ring location/time constraints and the predicted BFO values of these paths have been compared with the recorded values. The better the match, the higher the probability that the path was close to that of MH370.
Final handshake message at 00:19 (7th arc)
The 00:19 signalling message (7th arc) was a logon request from the aircraft. This is consistent with the satellite communication equipment on the aircraft powering up following a power interruption. The interruption in electrical supply may have been caused by fuel exhaustion.
Note on the satellite communication
The satellite’s normal function is essentially communication and it was never initially intended to have the capability to track an aircraft. Following the Air France 447 accident, Inmarsat engineers began recording the BTO in order to provide another potential means of geo-locating aircraft in the event of a similar accident.
Aircraft Performance Calculations
Estimates of fuel consumption were calculated from the time of the last recorded fuel quantity, using a range of flight paths and speeds. The results of these calculations were consistent with fuel exhaustion occurring close to the 7th arc.
Several teams independently provided both satellite communications and performance analysis as part of the validation process. The location of 9M-MRO on previous flights as well as the locations of other aircraft in the air at the same time were all used to validate the techniques.
An international air and maritime force conducted a surface search of drifted regions along the 7th arc from 18 March to 28 April 2014. A drifted region is created by modelling the movement of an area of water over the time period when the surface search is conducted. During this time, no debris was identified to be likely from MH 370.
Acoustic detections possibly related to underwater locator beacons were made by two vessels in the refined probability area from 5 – 8 April 2014. To further investigate these signals, a search of the ocean floor around the detections was performed by a number of vessels. To date no further sign of MH370 has been detected.
Low frequency hydroacoustic signals present in the Indian Ocean are being examined to determine whether they can provide any information to help define the search area. These signals are recorded by hydrophones as part of the United Nations Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban-Treaty Organisation (CTBTO) or the Integrated Marine Observing System (IMOS).
Use of waypoints
Comparison of possible flight paths with tracks using waypoints is also under consideration.
There is only one published north-south air route in the south-eastern Indian Ocean. Air route M641 connects Cocos Island to Perth and has four waypoints. The air route crosses the area where the four acoustic signals were detected.
Shape of the search area
At the time MH 370 reached the 7th arc, the aircraft is considered to have been descending. A study completed after the Air France 447 accident concluded that the majority of aircraft in loss of control accidents were found within 20 nautical miles (32 km) of their last known position. This provides a reasonable limitation for the size of the search area across the arc.
Additionally the Australian government through the ATSB on May 26 explained how it is searching for missing flight MH 370:
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is leading the underwater search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370. All the available data indicates the aircraft entered the sea close to a long but narrow arc of the southern Indian Ocean.
The search is a complex operation that will involve a range of vessels, equipment and expertise to cover 60,000 square kilometres of ocean floor.
During the first stage of the search, the ATSB is tasking a Chinese PLA-Navy ship to undertake a bathymetric survey of the 60,000 square kilometre search area. A contracted commercial vessel with join the survey in June. The bathymetric survey will provide a map of the underwater search zone, charting the contours, depths and hardness of the ocean floor.
While the ocean depth of the search zone is understood to be between 1000 m and 6000 m, we currently have very limited knowledge of the sea floor terrain facing the underwater search operation. The information we receive from the bathymetric survey will give us crucial data to plan and conduct the intensified underwater search.
How the survey’s done
The operation will involve a ship surveying the ocean floor using multi beam sonar, which is capable of collecting high quality data to water depths of up to 6,000 m.
Multibeam sonar is a common offshore surveying tool that uses multiple sound signals to detect the seafloor. Due to its multiple beams it is able to map a swath of the seabed under the ship, in contrast to a single beam sonar which only maps a point below the ship. Different frequencies are used to map different water depths, with higher frequencies (>100kHz) used for shallow water and low frequencies (<30 kHz) for deep water.
Generally, the multibeam sonar transducer is mounted rigidly to the hull of the survey vessel and its position can be calculated very accurately. Other parts of the multibeam system include auxiliary sensors such as motion-sensing systems and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) to ensure accurate positioning, motion sensing and sound speed measurement system.
A modern multibeam sonar transducer typically uses the Mills Cross telescope array. The sound is transmitted from transducers that are perpendicular to the survey track. Consequently, the sound pulses forms a transmit swath that is wide across-track and narrow along-track. The returning sound pulses, which are mainly recording the impedance contrast and seafloor topography, are received by the receivers which are mounted parallel to the survey track. These return beams are narrow across-track.
Unlike the sidescan sonar which commonly produces only acoustic backscatter data (i.e. hardness), the multibeam sonar generates both water depth and seafloor hardness data concurrently.1
How many vessels will be involved in the survey
The Chinese PLA-Navy ship Zhu Kezhen (872) is already in the search area conducting a bathymetric survey of an area provided by the ATSB. A contracted survey vessel will arrive in the search area in early June.
How long it will take?
It is expected that the bathymetric survey will take around three months to complete, but this will depend on a number of factors, such as weather conditions, during the survey operations.
The underwater search will begin when we have enough data from the bathymetric survey to start searching. This means that the underwater search will begin while the survey is still being completed.
On June 4 the ATSB issued a request for specialist help in determining the new search area (all proposals are due by June 30):
The ATSB has released a request for tender to acquire the services of a specialist company capable of conducting a deep-water search under ATSB direction for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH 370.
Engaged as a prime contractor, the company will provide the expertise, equipment and vessel(s) necessary to undertake an intensified underwater search for the missing Boeing 777 aircraft in the defined zone in the southern Indian Ocean.
While the precise search zone is currently being established by an international search strategy working group, it is expected that the successful tenderer will search an area up to 60,000 square kilometres based on the ‘seventh handshake’ arc where the aircraft last communicated with the Inmarsat satellite. Definition of the search zone will be finalised within two to three weeks.
The successful tenderer will localise, positively identify and map the debris field of MH 370 using specialist equipment such as towed and autonomous underwater vehicles with mounted sonar and/or optical imaging systems.
The intensified search will begin in August 2014 and is expected to take up to 12 months, depending on weather conditions. The successful tenderer will use the data from a bathymetric survey (already underway) to navigate the search zone, which has water depth between 1000 and 6000 metres.
The search vessel(s) used by the prime contractor may also be coordinated with other vessels also undertaking search activities in the search zone on behalf of other countries.
A copy of the request for tender is available on the AusTender website at http://www.tenders.gov.au. Request for tender submissions are due by 5.30pm AEST on June 30, 2014.
At the request of the Malaysian Government, the ATSB is leading the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.
Search for MH 370 Facts and Statistics:
Joint Agency Coordination Centre of Australia has issued these statistics on the search for MH 370:
Search for MH 370 facts and statistics
- Prime Minister Tony Abbott advised of the establishment of the JACC on 30 March 2014, headed by Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston AC AFC (Ret’d).
- Malaysia has lead investigative responsibility and the international accident crash investigation is based out of Kuala Lumpur.
- Malaysia, the United States of America, the United Kingdom, China, the Republic of Korea, Japan, New Zealand and Australia were all involved in the visual search.
- Over 4,600,000 square kilometres of ocean surface were searched.
- 345 search sorties were conducted by military aircraft for a total of over 2,998 hours.
- Over 30% of the military flights were made by Royal Australian Air Force planes.
- Aircraft that were involved in the visual search included:
- - 8 x Royal Australian Air Force ( 4 x AP-3C Orion, 2 x E-7A Wedgetail, 1 x KA350 King Air, 1 x C-130J Hercules)
- - 1 x Royal New Zealand Air Force (P-3K2 Orion)
- - 2 X United States Navy (P-8A Poseidon)
- - 2 x Peoples Liberation Army Air Force (IL – 76)
- - 3 x Japan (2 x Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force P-3C Orion and 1 x Japanese Coast GuardGulfstream V)
- - 2 x Republic of Korea (1 x ROK Navy P-3C Orion & 1 x ROK Air Force C-130H)
- - 3 x Royal Malaysian Air Force (3 x C-130H Hercules)
- Over 25 million litres of aviation fuel was used during the course of the visual search.
- Up to 19 ships were used to cover the search area.
- - 5 x Australian ships (1 x Replenishment Ship – HMAS Success, 1 x Frigate – HMAS Toowoomba including 1 x Seahawk Helicopter, 1 x Frigate – HMAS Perth, 1 x Australian Defence Vessel – Ocean Shield, 1 x Motor Vessel – Seahorse Standard)
- - 1 x USA ship (1 x Replenishment Ship – USNS Cesar Chavez)
- - 2 x UK ships (1 x Survey Ship – HMS Echo and 1 x Submarine – HMS Tireless)
- - 10 x Chinese ships (1 x Destroyer – Haikou, 2 x Amphibious Landing Dock – Kunlunshan & Jinggangshan, 1 x Coast Guard Vessel – Haixun 01, 2 x Ocean going Rescue Vessel – Donghaijui 101 & Nan Hai Jiu 101, 1 x Ocean going Rescue Vessel – Ben Hai Jiu III Wars 115, 1 x Replenishment Ship – Quindao Hu, 1 x Ice Breaker – MV Xue Long including Chinese Helicopter 7102, 1 x Survey Ship – Zhu Kezhen)
- - 2 x Malaysian ships (1 x Frigate – Lekiu 30, 1 x Replenishment Ship – Bunga Mas Enam BM-6)
- Bluefin-21 conducted a sub-surface search of over 850 square kilometres of the ocean floor.
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370, the greatest aviation mystery, may be entering a new phase in the search. So far the search has resulted in nothing being found. According to CNN, the search for the pictured Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) and the 239 passengers and crew members may not resume until August.
According to CNN:
“The underwater search for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane will effectively be put on hold this week, and may not resume until August at the very earliest, according to Australia’s top transport safety official.
The new timeline means that once Bluefin-21, the American underwater drone operated by a team on board the Australian Defense Vessel Ocean Shield, wraps up its work in a couple of days, it will be up to two months, if not longer, until new underwater vehicles are contracted and deployed in the hunt for MH 370.”
Read the full story: CLICK HERE
Is Inmarsat correct in its assumptions of where WH 370 went down? CNN explores this question: CLICK HERE
On May 20 Malaysia Airlines issued this statement:
Following the announcement by the Malaysian Minister of Defence and Acting Minister of Transport on May 19, 2014, the Malaysian Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) is pleased to provide further information on the discussion with Inmarsat, assisted by the AAIB, to get a common descriptor for the Inmarsat satellite data which had been provided to Malaysia Airlines when MH 370 first went missing.
It must be noted that previously where reference has been made to “data communication logs” and “raw data”- they refer to the same set of data.
In moving forward, it is imperative for us to provide helpful information to the next of kin and general public – which will include the data communication logs as well as relevant explanation to enable the reader to understand the data provided. It must also be noted that the data communication logs is just one of the many elements of the investigation information.
In line with our commitment towards greater transparency, all parties are working for the release of the data communication logs and the technical description of the analysis for public consumption.
DCA notes Inmarsat’s full support for the ongoing MH 370 investigation.”
Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com.
Missing Malaysia Airlines remains the biggest aviation mystery of our time, Bluefin-21 fails to find anything so far
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014 with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) remains missing with all of its 239 passengers and crew members. It remains the biggest aviation mystery of our age. The underwater drone called “Bluefin-21″ has failed to find any remains of the presumed to have crashed airliner.
Here is an update on missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 from CNN:
“The underwater drone scanning for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 finished its seventh mission Sunday (April 20), having covered about half its intended territory without finding any sign of the missing plane.
The Bluefin-21 drone started its eighth mission soon after the previous one ended Sunday morning, surveying the bottom of the southern Indian Ocean for traces of the Boeing 777.”
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Yesterday Hishammuddin Hussein, Minister of Defence and Acting Minister of Transport issued this briefing:
I would like to begin this with a message.
On behalf of the Malaysian Government and specifically the MH370 SAR team, we would like to extend deepest sympathies and condolences to those on board the tragic incident involving the South Korea ferry that departed from Incheon planned for Jeju. We empathies and can imagine how difficult it can be for the families and the SAR team coping with the situation. All our thoughts and prayers are with them.
I will now continue with MH370.
We have now entered day 43 of the search operation for the MH370. It has been six weeks since we started the operation in which we have continuously refined the search area in the quest to locate the missing aircraft. We have pursued every possible lead presented to us at this stage and with every passing day, the search has become more difficult.
On Thursday, I spoke with Angus Houston and he has briefed me on the images captured from the Bluefin – 21 AUV. I can confirm that the Bluefin – 21 has captured clear and sharp images of the seabed while its search mission in the underwater search area. However, from all 6 missions conducted, no contacts of interest have been found to date. Bluefin – 21 AUV’s seventh missing has been commenced this morning.
From the images, Angus has also confirmed me that the terrain of the seabed is undulating and the Bluefin – 21 is focusing on the immediate search area based on the pings that have been detected. Some media reports have stated that it would take Bluefin -21 anywhere from six weeks to two months to scan the entire underwater search area. This is incorrect. The immediate search area that the Bluefin – 21 is now scouring should be completed within the next week.
As Prime Minister Abbott stated earlier this week, and I quote –
“We will regroup and reconsider the SAR operations, if there are no new updates in the given time” – end quote.
I have to stress that this is not ti stip operations but to also consider other approaches which may include widening the scope of the search and utilizing other assets that could be relevant in the search operation.
The search will always continue. It is just a matter of approach. All efforts will intensified for the next few days with regards to the underwater search.
I would also like to take this opportunity, on behalf of the Malaysian government, to again thank Australia on narrowing the search area and doing all they can in the search for MH370.
Updates on Ministerial Committees
As I announced a few weeks ago, three ministerial committees have been established. They have been working tirelessly and I will now update you on their progress.
The next of kin committee, led by Hamzah Zainuddin, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, is working closely with various Governments especially the countries whose nationals were on board MH370. From the meetings with the representative embassies and high commissions, various issues that needed urgent attention were addressed.
Hamzah has also discussed with his counterparts in Beijing and both sides have exchanged views and discussed ways and means to deal with the situation with regards to the families of those on board.
The technical committee, led by Aziz Kaprawi, Deputy Minister of Transport, has developed and drafted the proposed structure and Terms of Reference of the Aircraft Accident Investigation Team For MH370 in accordance with the Malaysian Civil Aviation Regulations 1996 (MCAR 1996) and Annex 13 – Aircraft Accident and Incident Investigation, Chicago Convention.
The structure was developed after consulting the experts from the Air Accidents Investigation Brach, United Kingdom (AAIB), National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), United States, Australia Transportation Safety Board (ATSB) and Air Accident Investigation Department, China. The proposed team would comprise of local and international experts.
We have also spoken with the ASEAN secretariat on the possibility of appointing some of our counterparts to come on board. This is in accordance with the ASEAN Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation Relating to Aircraft Accident and Incident Investigation that was signed in 2008.
The Asset Deployment committee has identified private companies that have the capabilities for deep water salvage and recovery work, and other national assets that can be deployed to support this operation. Local companies such as DEFTECH and Boustead have been tasked to discuss with their international collaborative partners such as SAAB, DCNS (Direction des Constructions Navales) and other to identify the relevant assets and instruments required for the search operation.
I have also been in consultations with Jean Paul Troadec given his experience in handling Air France 447 in deploying private commercial assets to assist in their search operations.
As we move on to the next phase of the search, I am humbled that more friends from other nations have been expressed their willingness to assist and support our efforts to locate MH370.
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370, remains missing. The search for MH 370 has been long and frustrating to everyone involved. The fate of Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) (above) and the 239 souls on board remains a true aviation mystery. It may remain the greatest mystery of our lifetimes.
A new oil slick has been discovered near where the four series of pings were located west of Australia in the Ocean Ocean. There has been no sign of any wreckage from 9M-MRO.
According to CNN, the search for MH 370 enters a new phase with the underwater vehicle Bluefin 21 taking center stage.
However Bluefin 21 faces plenty of challenges in finding the missing Triple Seven. This article explains how the side-scan sonar works on Bluefin 21.
Read the full story: CLICK HERE
Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO lands at the Kuala Lumpur base in the past.
According to CNN, “A Chinese patrol ship looking for signs of Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) flight MH 370 in the southern Indian Ocean discovered Saturday a pulse signal with a frequency of 37.5 kHz, state news agency Xinhua reported.
“That is the standard beacon frequency” for both so-called black boxes — the cockpit voice recorder and the flight data recorder, said Anish Patel, president of pinger manufacturer Dukane Seacom.”
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
The Joint Agency Corrdination Centre of Australia issued this statement today:
Up to 10 military planes, three civil jets and 11 ships will assist in today’s search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. Today ADV Ocean Shield and HMS Echo continue underwater search operations.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority has determined a search area of about 217,000 square kilometres, 1700 kilometres north west of Perth.
Today’s search area will focus on three areas within the same vicinity.
The weather forecast for today’s search is fair, with possible showers in the search area.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau continues to refine the area where the aircraft entered the water based on continuing ground-breaking and multi-disciplinary technical analysis of satellite communication and aircraft performance, passed from the international air crash investigative team comprising analysts from Malaysia, the United States, the UK, China and Australia.
Malaysia Airlines today issued this statement:
It’s been almost a month since MH370 went missing.
The search operation has been difficult, challenging and complex.
In spite of all this, our determination remains undiminished.
We will continue the search with the same level of vigour and intensity.
We owe this to the families of those on board, and to the wider world.
We will continue to focus, with all our efforts, on finding the aircraft.
2. Investigation into MH370
As per the requirements set out by the ICAO in Annex 13 of the International Standards and Recommended Practices, Malaysia will continue to lead the investigation into MH370.
As per the ICAO standards, Malaysia will also appoint an independent ‘Investigator In Charge’ to lead an investigation team.
The investigation team will include three groups:
– an airworthiness group, to look at issues such as maintenance records, structures and systems;
– an operations group, to examine things such as flight recorders, operations and meteorology;
– and a medical and human factors group, to investigate issues such as psychology, pathology and survival factors.
The investigation team will also include accredited countries.
Malaysia has already asked Australia to be accredited to the investigation team, and they have accepted.
We will also include China, the United States, the United Kingdom and France as accredited representatives to the investigation team, along with other countries that we feel are in a position to help.
3. Formation of committees
In addition to the new investigation team mentioned above, the Government – in order to streamline and strengthen our on-going efforts – has established three ministerial committees.
Firstly, we have established a Next of Kin Committee. Hamzah Zainuddin, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, leads this committee.
This committee will oversee all aspects regarding the Next of Kin of those on board MH370, providing families with information on the search operation, and offering support after the search operation has been concluded.
The committee will co-ordinate with relevant foreign governments, and will complement the work already being done for the families by Malaysian Airlines.
The second committee oversees technicalities, specifically, the formation and the appointment of the investigation team. Abdul Aziz Kaprawi, the Deputy Minister of Transport, leads this committee.
The third committee takes over issues related to the deployment of assets for the search operation. Abdul Rahim Bakri, the Deputy Minister of Defence, leads this committee. This committee will work with foreign counterparts involved in the search operation, and liaise closely with the Australian Joint Agency Co-ordination Centre.
4. US-ASEAN Defence Forum
This morning, I returned from the US-ASEAN Defence Forum, which I attended in my capacity as Defence Minister.
At the forum, I updated our ASEAN counterparts, and the United States, on the latest developments in the search for MH370.
I also spoke to officials from other countries involved in the multi-national search operation.
The spirit of co-operation at the meeting, and the support offered, was commendable.
During my bilateral meeting with US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, Secretary Hagel reiterated his commitment that the United States would continue to support the search operation, and will provide whatever assets are deemed necessary.
I thanked Secretary Hagel for the United States’ unwavering support, which has included both the deployment of naval and air assets, sophisticated underwater search equipment, and assistance from the FBI, the NTSB and the FAA.
At the Forum, I also received strong support from our ASEAN partners in the search for MH370.
I would like to read out the joint statement issued by the ASEAN Ministers, which I believe underscores the tremendous spirit of co-operation within ASEAN, in the face of this difficult search operation:
“We, the Defence Ministers of the member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations express our deepest sympathies to the family members of the passengers and crew on board the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370.
We acknowledge that the member nations of ASEAN have participated in the search operations directly and indirectly since the plane went missing on 8th March 2014.
From the South China Sea, the Andaman Sea to the Indian Ocean – ASEAN has continued to assist in every way possible, true to the spirit of regional cooperation and friendship without any hesitation in sharing of information, assets and expertise.
We believe that Malaysia has done its level best in its response to this unprecedented predicament given the sheer scale of the Search and Rescue (SAR) operation which is the biggest and most complex we have ever seen.
We reaffirm our commitment for greater cooperation between each member nationespecially in the field of disaster management under the framework of the ASEAN Agreement on Disaster Management and Emergency Response. This incident stressed upon us the importance of information and resource sharing as we strive to be in the utmost state of readiness in mitigating potential calamities and risks.
ASEAN’s unity will remain solid and is totally committed to assisting Malaysia in coordinating this massive SAR to locate MH370. We are resolute in finding a closure to this tragic chapter in aviation history. Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families in these difficult times.”
5. Concluding remarks
Before I end, let me touch on some unfounded allegations made against Malaysia.
These allegations include the extraordinary assertion that Malaysian authorities were somehow complicit in what happened to MH370.
I should like to state, for the record, that these allegations are completely untrue.
As I have said before, the search for MH370 should be above politics.
And so I call on all Malaysians to unite; to stand by our armed forces as they work in difficult conditions, with their foreign counterparts, thousands of miles from home; and to support all those who are working tirelessly in the search for MH370.
Lastly, as I mentioned on Wednesday, while I was at the US-ASEAN Defence Forum, I spoke by telephone to the British Secretary of State for Defence, Phillip Hammond, regarding the nuclear-powered submarine HMS Tireless.
I hereby confirm that the submarine is now in the search area and helping in the search operation.
Has missing flight MH 370 finally been located? French satellite shows a new large debris field of 122 shiny objects
According to CNN, “Malaysian Remote Sensing Agency (MRSA) received new satellite images from France that were taken on March 23. The images showed 122 potential objects in one area of the Indian Ocean. Some of the objects were as much as 23 meters in length. Some appeared bright, possibly indicating solid material. They were located about 2,500 kilometers from Perth. “This is another new lead that will help direct the search operation,” said Acting Minister of Transportation Hishammuddin Bin Hussein on Wednesday.”
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has issued this update for today (March 26):
Today’s search for any signs of the missing Malaysia Airlines aircraft in the Australian Search and Rescue Region is now underway.
A total of six countries are now assisting in the search and recovery operation – Australia, New Zealand, the United States, Japan, China and the Republic of Korea.
A total of seven military and five civil aircraft will be involved in today’s search activities. One Ilyushin IL-76 aircraft from China departed Perth around 8am for the search area.
A Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P3 Orion aircraft NZ P-3K2 departed for the search area around 9.10am.
A Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) P3 Orion is scheduled to depart Perth around 11am. A US Navy P8 Poseidon is due to depart around 2pm.
A Japanese P3 Orion is due to depart Perth around 3pm.
A second RAAF P3 Orion is scheduled to depart for the search area around 4pm.
A Republic of Korea P3 Orion is due to depart around 5pm.
Two civil aircraft have now departed Perth for the search area. The remaining three civil aircraft will depart for the search area between 10am and midday.
A total of 34 State Emergency Service (SES) volunteers from Western Australia will be air observers on board the five civil aircraft.
HMAS Success and China’s polar supply ship Xue Long are now in the search area.
Malaysia Airlines just issued this statement:
The search for MH370 continues. Our efforts are now focused in the southern Indian Ocean, where a multi-national team, led by Australia, is combing the waters trying to find debris from the flight.
Our determination to find MH370 remains steadfast. As we have said all along, we will never give up trying to find the plane – in order to bring closure for the families, and to establish exactly what happened to MH370.
1. New satellite images:
Australia, China and France have already released satellite images, showing objects that may be related to MH370.
Yesterday, on 25 March, the Malaysian Remote Sensing Agency (MRSA) received new satellite images from Airbus Defence and Space, which is based in France. The images were taken on 23 March.
MRSA analysed the images and – in one area of the ocean measuring some 400 square kilometres – were able to identify 122 potential objects.
Some objects were a metre in length; others were as much as 23 metres in length. Some of the objects appeared to be bright, possibly indicating solid materials.
The objects were located approximately 2,557 kilometres from Perth. We will issue handouts relating to this new information, after this press conference.
MRSA’s findings were immediately forwarded to the Australian Rescue Co-ordination Centre in Perth yesterday. It must be emphasized that we cannot tell whether the potential objects are from MH370. Nevertheless, this is another new lead that will help direct the search operation.
We have now had four separate satellite leads, from Australia, China and France, showing possible debris. It is now imperative that we link the debris to MH370. This will enable us to further reduce the search area, and locate more debris from the plane.
2. Operational update:
Australia is leading the search effort in the southern Indian Ocean, based out of Perth. Malaysia continues to play a co-ordinating role. All countries involved are displaying unprecedented levels of co-operation; that has not changed. Australia has divided the search area into two sectors, East and West.
Today the weather has improved, and twelve planes will travel to the search area – six in the East sector and six in the West.
In the East sector, searches will be conducted by:
– one Australian P3 Orion, and three Australian civilian aircraft.
– one Chinese Ilyushin IL-76.
– one New Zealand P3 Orion.
In the West sector, searches will be conducted by:
– one US P8 Poseidon.
– one Korean P3 Orion.
– one Japanese P3 Orion.
– two Australian P3 Orions, and one civilian aircraft.
Two ships will also join the search operations.
Yesterday ‘HMAS Success’ was redeployed to the south of the search area due to bad weather. Today the ship has returned and will support the search operation in the West sector. Meanwhile, the Chinese ship ‘Xue Long’ has today been deployed to the East sector.
A Japanese Coast Guard gulfstream aircraft left Subang this morning for Perth, to join the search operation.
As I mentioned yesterday, the search operations in the northern corridor, and in the northern part of the southern corridor, have been called off. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has sent diplomatic notes to all relevant countries to formally inform them of this change.
Before I continue, I would like to convey our appreciation to the Australian authorities, and in particular to Prime Minister Tony Abbot, for making such an extraordinary contribution to the search operation.
3. Chinese Special Envoy
Today, the Prime Minister met with His Excellency Zhang Yesui, the Chinese Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and Special Envoy of the Government of China. I also met with His Excellency this afternoon.
During our conversation His Excellency conveyed China’s commitment to continue and intensify the search operation in any way possible, and to deploy any assets that may be required.
Malaysia has provided his His Excellency and his delegation with a full update on the latest information from Inmarsat.
His Excellency and his delegation also received a comprehensive briefing from the international technical team.
4. International Working Group
As I mentioned yesterday, based on the new information provided by Inmarsat, we have established an international working group. The agencies involved in this working group include: Inmarsat, AAIB, the Chinese CAAC and AAID, NTSB, FAA, Boeing and Rolls Royce, as well as the relevant Malaysian authorities.
The role of the working group is to help try and refine the Inmarsat data and, if possible, more accurately determine the final position of MH370.
5. Further information
I should like to note that the CEO of Malindo Airlines, Chandran Rama Murthy, has joined me on stage today, and will be able to answer any questions that you might have.
As I announced yesterday, MAS is now taking a lead in communicating with the families and is conducting their own press conferences. MAS will hold another press conference tomorrow.
New satellite images continue to provide clues in the search for MH370. And with improved weather conditions, aircraft are now able to investigate objects of interest.
I would like to thank once again our international partners for their continued support and assistance. The search for MH370, and the investigation into what happened on board the flight, is now a truly international effort.
Bad weather and rough seas disrupts the search for debris from Malaysia Airlines missing flight MH 370
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) with 239 souls on board remains lost somewhere in the remote south Indian Ocean. So far, no confirmed debris has been located from the missing flight.
According to Reuters, “bad weather and rough seas today (March 25) forced the suspension of the search for any wreckage of the missing Malaysian jetliner that officials are now sure crashed in the remote Indian Ocean with the loss of all 239 people on board.”
Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) which is leading the search from Perth, Western Australia, issued this map and statement today:
A search and recovery operation for the missing Malaysia Airlines aircraft in the southern Indian Ocean will resume on Wednesday, March 25.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott confirmed on Tuesday the focus is now on search and recovery of any objects related to the ill-fated Malaysian Airlines flight MH370.
A visual search will resume tomorrow when the weather is expected to improve after gale force winds and heavy swells resulted in the suspension of the search operation on Tuesday.
As many as twelve aircraft are expected to be involved in the search tomorrow, including seven military aircraft and five civil aircraft.
HMAS Success will return to the search area and conduct a surface sweep of an area identified on Monday afternoon by a Royal Australian Air Force P3 Orion as the location for several objects of interest.
A total of six countries are now assisting in the search – Australia, New Zealand, the United States, Japan, China and the Republic of Korea.
India has also offered to join the search and recovery operation.
China’s polar supply ship Xue Long (Snow Dragon) and three other Chinese ships are expected to arrive in the search area on Wednesday.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Malaysia Airlines today issued this statement:
By: Tan Sri Md Nor Md Yusof, Chairman of Malaysia Airlines
As you will be aware, last night the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dato’ Seri Najib Tun Razak, announced new evidence regarding the disappearance of MH370 on March 8.
Based on this evidence, the Prime Minister’s message was that we must accept the painful reality that the aircraft is now lost and that none of the passengers or crew on board survived.
This is a sad and tragic day for all of us at Malaysia Airlines. While not entirely unexpected after an intensive multi-national search across a 2.24 million square mile area, this news is clearly devastating for the families of those on board. They have waited for over two weeks for even the smallest hope of positive news about their loved ones.
This has been an unprecedented event requiring an unprecedented response. The investigation still underway may yet prove to be even longer and more complex than it has been since March 8. But we will continue to support the families – as we have done throughout. And to support the authorities as the search for definitive answers continues. I will now ask our Group Chief Executive¸ Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, to provide you will with fuller details of our support for the families.
By: Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, Group Chief Executive Officer, Malaysia Airlines
I stand before you today not only as the Group Chief Executive Officer of Malaysia Airlines, but also as a parent, as a brother, as a son. My heart breaks to think of the unimaginable pain suffered by all the families. There are no words which can ease that pain. Everyone in the Malaysia Airlines family is praying for the 239 souls on MH370 and for their loved ones on this dark day. We extend our prayers and sincere condolences.
We all feel enormous sorrow and pain. Sorrow that all those who boarded Flight MH370 on Saturday 8th March, will not see their families again. And that those families will now have to live on without those they love. It must be remembered too that 13 of our own colleagues and fellow Malaysians were also on board.
And let me be very clear on the events of yesterday evening. Our sole and only motivation last night was to ensure that in the incredibly short amount of time available to us, the families heard the tragic news before the world did. Wherever humanly possible, we did so in person with the families or by telephone, using SMS only as an additional means of ensuring fully that the nearly 1,000 family members heard the news from us and not from the media.
Ever since the disappearance of Flight MH370 Malaysia Airlines’ focus has been to comfort and support the families of those involved and support the multi-national search effort. We will continue to do this, while we also continue to support the work of the investigating authorities in the Southern Indian Ocean.
Like everyone else, we are waiting for news from those authorities. We know that while there have been an increasing number of apparent leads, definitive identification of any piece of debris is still missing. It is impossible to predict how long this will take. But after 17 days, the announcement made last night and shared with the families is the reality which we must now accept. When Malaysia Airlines receives approval from the investigating authorities, arrangements will be made to bring the families to the recovery areas if they so wish. Until that time, we will continue to support the ongoing investigation. And may I express my thanks to the Government and all of those involved in this truly global search effort.
In the meantime, Malaysia Airlines’ overwhelming focus will be the same as it has been from the outset – to provide the families with a comprehensive support program. Through a network of over 700 dedicated caregivers, the loved ones of those on board have been provided with two dedicated caregivers for each family, providing care, support and counsel. We are now supporting over 900 people under this programme and in the last 72 hours, we have trained an additional 40 caregivers to ensure the families have access to round-the-clock support.
In addition, hotel accommodation for up to five family members per passenger, transportation, meals and others expenses have been provided since March 8 and that will continue.
Malaysia Airlines has already provided initial financial assistance of $5,000 per passenger to the next of kin. We recognize that financial support is not the only consideration. But the prolonged search is naturally placing financial strain on the relatives. We are therefore preparing to offer additional payments as the search continues.
This unprecedented event in aviation history has made the past 18 days the greatest challenge to face our entire team at Malaysia Airlines. I have been humbled by the hard work, dedication, heartfelt messages of concern and offers of support from our remarkable team. We do not know why, and we do not know how this terrible tragedy happened. But as the Malaysia Airlines family, we are all praying for the passengers and crew of Flight MH370.
Copyright Photo and Map: AMSA.
A Chinese Ilyushin Il-76 search aircraft has spotted “suspicious objects” in the southern Indian Ocean today (March 24) according to Reuters, quoting a Xinhua news agency report. The crew spotted two “relatively big” floating objects and several smaller white ones dispersed over several kilometers, Xinhua reported. The object could be from missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 with missing Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (man 28420) and its passengers.
Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE
In addition and Australian aircraft has also spotted additional debris.
According to CNN, “military radar tracking shows that the aircraft changed altitude after making a sharp turn over the South China Sea as it headed toward the Strait of Malacca, a source close to the investigation into the missing flight told CNN. The plane flew as low as 12,000 feet at some point before it disappeared from radar, according to the source.”
This would suggest a possible massive decompression or fire on board and the crew was trying to get back to land and a lower altitude.
Read the full report from CNN: CLICK HERE
Some missing airliners are never found. In June 1960, Northwest Airlines flight 2501 vanished over Lake Michigan. It has never been found:
The loss of flight MH 370 has been a struggle for the state-owned flag carrier. The presumed crash will also have a financial toll for the carrier. The airline has been struggling to be profitable. Bloomberg Businessweek discusses the financial health of the airline.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Forbes: Boeing 777 controls cannot be hacked: Read the full story: CLICK HERE
Finally Malaysia Airlines has issued this short statement and a video from its CEO Ahmad Jauhari:
As the search and rescue mission of flight MH 370 continues to prove to be an uphill battle, Malaysia Airlines has not wavered in our efforts to offer compassion and support. Throughout this entire period Malaysia Airlines has provided complete cooperation to the SAR team. However, our priority has always been the well being of the family members of our passengers and the crew on board.
According to Reuters, “new French satellite images show possible debris from a missing Malaysian airliner deep in the southern Indian Ocean, Malaysia said Sunday (March 23), adding to growing signs that the plane may have gone down in remote seas off Australia.”
According to the Malaysian authorities:
“This morning, Malaysia received new satellite images from the French authorities showing potential objects in the vicinity of the southern corridor,” the Malaysian Transport Ministry said in a statement. “Malaysia immediately relayed these images to the Australian rescue co-ordination center.”
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Therefore the remote southern Indian Ocean area (around 1,500 miles southwest of Perth, Western Australia) is the most likely resting place for missing Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) flight MH 370 with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (man 28420) (above) with its missing passengers and crew members.
However no confirmed debris has been found from the missing Boeing 777 9M-MRO. The southern Indian Ocean is one of the most remote spots in the world. If you wanted to get lost or disappear, this would be the area.
Here is the press briefing statement yesterday (March 22) of Hishammuddin Hussein, Malaysia Minister of Defence and Acting Minister of Transport:
Diplomatic, logistical and technical efforts continue in the search for MH370. As we intensify the search and rescue operations, the overall emphasis remains the same: using all available means to narrow the search areas in both corridors.
1. Operational update
In the northern corridor, in response to diplomatic notes, we can confirm that China, India, Pakistan, Myanmar, Laos, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan have verbally informed the search and rescue operation that based on preliminary analysis, there have been no sightings of the aircraft on their radar.
With respect to the southern corridor, today two Chinese Ilyushin IL-76s will arrive in Perth to begin operations. The Shaanxi Y-8 which arrived yesterday will be operating from Subang air base in Malaysia. China is also sending an additional two ships from the Andaman Sea to join the five Chinese ships already in the southern corridor. Two Indian aircraft, a P-8 Poseidon and C-130 Hercules, arrived in Malaysia at 18:00 last night to assist with the search.
HMS Echo is currently in the Persian Gulf and is en route to the southern corridor. The ship is equipped with advanced sensors that allow it to search effectively underwater.
2. Australian search area
Five aircraft and two merchant ships were involved in the search and rescue operations in the vicinity of the objects identified by the Australian authorities, which are approximately 2,500km southwest of Perth. Despite improved visual search conditions yesterday, there were no sightings of the objects of interest.
Operations continue, and today they plan to search an area of approximately 10,500 square nautical miles.
The Rescue Co-ordination Centre Australia anticipates that 6 aircraft, 4 military and 2 civilian, will be visually searching the area. Two merchant vessels will also be present during search operations, and HMAS Success was due to reach the search area at 14:30 today.
Generally, conditions in the southern corridor are very challenging. The ocean varies between 1,150 metres and 7,000 metres in depth. In the area where the possible objects were identified by the Australian authorities there are strong currents and rough seas.
A cyclone warning has been declared for Tropical Cyclone Gillian, which is located in the southern corridor. Very strong winds and rough seas are expected there today.
3. Family briefings
The briefing for families in KL yesterday went well. The briefing in Beijing, however, was less productive. Despite the best intentions, I understand there were tense scenes.
I have received a report from the Malaysian high-level team, as well as a copy of the declaration from the Chinese families. I have asked the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, together with the authorities in China, to investigate what happened.
We will continue to engage with the families. We are working hard with Chinese authorities and the Chinese working group to create a more conducive environment for the briefings. I have instructed my technical team to do a review of both briefings so that we can improve them.
We appeal to all parties to be understanding during this extraordinary and difficult time. My pledge to all the families, wherever they are, is the same: we will do everything in our power to keep you informed.
The original transcript of the conversation between MH370 and Malaysian air traffic control is with the investigations team, where it is being analysed.
As is standard practice in investigations of this sort, the transcript cannot be publicly released at this stage. I can however confirm that the transcript does not indicate anything abnormal.
5. Cargo manifest
On the matter of MH370’s cargo, the cargo manifest is with the investigations team, and will be released in due course.
Preliminary investigation of the cargo manifest has not shown any link to anything that might have contributed to MH370’s disappearance.
As was stated yesterday, all cargo carried on MH370 was in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organisation and International Air Transport Association standards.
6. Concluding remarks
Over the past two weeks, the search for MH370 has taken many twists and turns. From satellite images to eyewitness accounts, we have followed every lead and investigated every possibility.
Today we are focused on leads from the satellite images announced by the Australian authorities on Thursday. We continue to be updated by the Australian authorities on an hourly basis.
I know this rollercoaster has been incredibly hard for everyone, especially for the families. We hope and pray this difficult search will be resolved, and bring closure to those whose relatives were on board.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all 26 countries who are with us in this effort; from ordinary people to the highest levels of government.
I would also like to pay special tribute to the men and women from all countries who are putting themselves in harm’s way in the search for MH370.
As we speak, people are sailing through a cyclone to help find the missing plane. We are immensely grateful to all our partners for their efforts.
Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com.
China, according to CNN, has discovered “new satellite images showing a large object floating in the southern search area” of the Indian Ocean.
The object is 22 meters long and 30 meters wide, (72 feet by 98 feet), Hishammuddin Hussein announced. He told reporters he’s just gotten the information, and China will release more details in “coming hours.”
Unfortunately the Chinese satellite image is four days old!
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
The search for MH 370 debris has also been hampered by the ever-worsening ocean debris problem.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
It is now night time in Perth, Australia and the southern Indian Ocean.
Meanwhile Malaysia Airlines addressed the issue of lithium batteries with this statement:
Malaysia Airlines wishes to clarify that the lithium ion batteries carried onboard MH370 on 8 March 2014 was in compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) requirements where it is classified as Non Dangerous Goods.
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) has issued this latest statement today. Meanwhile Reuters is reporting Australian Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss said today (March 21) the floating objects spotted on satellite images in the remote southern Indian Ocean for Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 operated with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) may have sunk. The satellite images were taken on March 16 of two large floating pieces of debris approximately 1,500 miles southwest of Perth, Western Australia. Here is the statement by the airline of the press briefing of Hishammuddin Hussein, Minister of Defence and Acting Minister of Transport:
Malaysia continues to work on the diplomatic, technical and logistical challenges involved in the search for MH370.
We are still awaiting information from the Australian search and rescue operation as to whether the objects shown in the satellite images released by Australia yesterday are indeed related to MH370.
In the meantime, we are continuing search and rescue operations in the rest of the southern and northern corridors. I will now give you a brief operational update.
1. Operational update
Search efforts southwest of Perth continue, and the Australian authorities are intensifying their efforts in the area. HMAS Success is due to reach the vicinity of the objects tomorrow.
China has deployed 5 ships and 3 ship-borne helicopters, which are currently heading toward the southern corridor. 3 Chinese aircraft (2 Ilyushin IL-76s and 1 Shaanxi Y-8) arrived in Malaysia at 11:00 this morning. They will also be searching in the southern corridor.
Japan is deploying its assets to Perth, including 2 P-3 Orions, to assist with the Australian search efforts.
This morning I have spoken with the acting High Commissioner from the United Kingdom, who confirmed that the Prime Minister has spoken to the Prime Minister of the UK, and that HMS Echo is already heading towards the southern Indian Ocean to support the search effort. He also confirmed that the UK will be providing us with a list of possible assets that can be deployed if needed.
He also has reaffirmed that, in addition to the technical support provided so far, it stands ready to provide further specialist search and investigative assistance once more information about the fate of MH370 becomes known.
I have also been in touch with the French delegation, which is led by the French Ambassador to Malaysia, and includes the man who led the investigation into the Air France 447 crash. They have agreed to assist us with their considerable experience and expertise.
I will also be speaking to the US Secretary of Defence at 21:15 tonight, to request further specialist assets to help with the search and rescue efforts, including remotely-operated vehicles for deep ocean salvage.
The Kazakhstan authorities have assured us that they have found no trace of MH370, and we are awaiting permission for Kazakhstan to be used as a staging point for search operations.
On the police investigation, the Ukraine police have confirmed that the background checks on the Ukrainian passenger have come back clear.
2. Satellite data processing
I would like to briefly discuss the processing of the Inmarsat data.
The investigations team received the complete raw Inmarsat satellite data which included the six handshakes at approximately 15:00 on Wednesday 12th March.
This type of data is not normally used in investigations of this sort. It is only because we have so little other information to go on in this difficult and unprecedented situation that the data is being used.
Upon receiving the raw data, the Malaysian authorities immediately discussed with the US team how this information might be used. The US team and the investigations team then sent the data to the US, where further processing was needed before it could be used.
Initial results were received on Thursday 13th March at approximately 13:30, but it was agreed by the US team and the investigations team that further refinement was needed, so the data was again sent back to the US.
The results were received at approximately 14:30 on Friday 14th March, and presented to the investigations team at a high-level meeting at 21:00 on Friday. The UK AAIB, who had also been processing this data independently, presented their results – which concurred with ours and those of the US team – at that meeting.
The Prime Minister was briefed on this satellite information at 08:00 Saturday 15th March, and publicly announced it at the press conference at Saturday lunchtime. Search and rescue operations were immediately shifted to the northern and southern corridor.
3. Family care
Last night in Kuala Lumpur we held a briefing for the relatives of those on board MH370. As I mentioned in yesterday’s statement, the briefing was to update family members on the latest developments, and to answer questions and clear up any confusion.
The meeting was well attended by family members from different nations, including Malaysia, and by representatives from the Chinese Embassy in Kuala Lumpur.
A high-level Malaysian delegation, including representatives from Malaysia Airlines, the Department of Civil Aviation, the Ministry of Transport, the Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the National Security Council also attended the meeting.
We had a very constructive and frank discussion. Although we answered most of the questions they raised, we could not answer them all. These briefings will continue – at the families’ convenience – for as long as the families want them.
The briefing brought the families and the Malaysian authorities closer together, not just in terms of sharing information, but also in terms of listening to the voice of the family members. The Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to China will be co-ordinating the briefings in Kuala Lumpur from now on.
The high-level team I announced yesterday arrived in Beijing last night. Today they met with family members for three and half hours.
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) with 239 souls on board may have been sighted on the remote island island of Kuda Huvadhoo in the Maldives (south-southwest of Male). Islanders spotted a Jumbo Jet with a red stripe flying low over their island at 6:15 am local time on March 8. The distance from the last reported position of MH 370 to Kuda Huvadhoo is around 2,000 miles.
Read the full account from the International Business Times: CLICK HERE
Read another report from Sydney Morning Herald: CLICK HERE
Map Google Maps.
Meanwhile Malaysia Airlines has issued this 21st media statement:
The passengers and crew on-board flight MH 370, their families and loved ones, have been at the center of every action Malaysia Airlines has taken as a Company since we first learned the flight disappeared.
The Malaysian Government is coordinating an unprecedented international search effort covering 2.24 million square nautical miles. With this simply enormous area we cannot determine how long it will take to locate the aircraft.
Considering these challenges, our caregivers have informed the family members of the missing passengers and crew that we have taken the decision to continue to provide information and assistance through the further enhanced Family Support Centre (FSC) based in Kuala Lumpur which has been operational since March 8, 2014 rather than the various Family Assistance Centers (FACs).
The Family Support Centre will continue to proactively provide relatives waiting for news at home with daily updates. In addition to personal phone calls, Malaysia Airlines will now send out SMS blasts with brief updates to the families. We have also set up an email address for family members as a channel for them to communicate with us. Updates via the Malaysia Airlines website are also available.
This Family Support Centre will be open round-the-clock and will house family support representatives trained to assist those who are seeking answers and further information. The representatives will be divided into four shifts with ten staff handling each shift. This will ensure that someone is available to attend to the families at all times. The centre will also have Mandarin speaking personnel.
Below are the toll-free numbers that has been set-up for eight different countries. A back-up number is also given to the families in the event they are not able to reach the toll-free number. The number to call to get in touch with this centre is +603 8777 5770.
Countries Toll-free number
China 10-800-130-1364 (South China) / 10-800-713-1404 (North China)
New Zealand 080-045-4029
All this while, the families have always been briefed first, followed by the media and then the public whenever new information surfaces. However, the often conflicting information and wild speculation have caused a major distress to the families.
The Airline continues to work closely with the authorities and we appreciate the help we are receiving from all local and international agencies during this critical and traumatic period.
Our top priority remains to provide any and all assistance to the families of the passengers and crew.
Bloomberg Businessweek explores the question of whether Malaysia (the government and the airline) can restore its public image.
Read the article: CLICK HERE
If Malaysia Airlines missing flight MH 370 went into the southern Indian Ocean, it’s a lonely place, was the captain politically motivated?
Investigators are now looking at the possibility that Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 made either a north turn or a south turn once it was in the middle of the Indian Ocean. The satellite data revealed by Prime Minister Najib suggests the airliner could be anywhere in either of two arcs: one stretching from northern Thailand to the border of Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, or a southern arc heading from Indonesia to the vast southern Indian Ocean. If the missing flight with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) and 239 souls on board took a turn to the south it could have not picked a more desolate spot on earth except for the polar regions.
According to this article by Reuters, a plane could crash in this area without a ship spotting it or even radar picking it up. In short, it is a lonely place.
So far no trace of missing flight MH 370 has been found. Searchers are now switching to the Indian Ocean but it is a vast area and will be a daunting task. The aircraft could have flown another 2,200 miles after it was last spotted off the northwest coast of Malaysia. That leaves a lot of ocean territory (see map above) to search.
According to Reuters in the article, “The southern Indian Ocean, between Indonesia and Australia, is broken up only by the Australian territories of Christmas Island, home to asylum seeker detention facilities, and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands some 2,000 km (1,240 miles) northwest of Perth. The Cocos Islands have a small airport to serve the islands’ combined population of just 3,000 people.
Further south, the only habitation is the handful of research stations on the scattering of tiny French-run islands including Kerguelen – a group of volcanic outcrops between Africa, Australia and Antarctica. While home to several powerful astronomical scanners and radar, there is no airport and it is seen extremely unlikely the aircraft could have made it that far.”
In summary, MH 370 may never be found and could become the biggest aviation mystery in history. Let’s hope there is some closure for the grieving families.
Read the full article: CLICK HERE
Meanwhile investigators are also searching for a motive and an answer to the large “why?”. Investigators are investigating the backgrounds of the pilots, crew members and passengers on board missing flight MH 370.
Was this disappearance meant to embarrass the ruling government of Malaysia which has not done a good job of handling this crisis?
Reuters reports the captain (who had a simulator in his home) had postings on his Facebook page suggesting the pilot was a political opponent of the ruling Malaysian government coalition that has ruled Malaysia for the past 57 years since independence.
Read the full article from Reuters: CLICK HERE
Timeline of events: CLICK HERE
Malaysia Airlines issued this 19th media statement late yesterday:
Further to the statement by the Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak earlier today into the ongoing search for Flight MH 370, Malaysia Airlines has shared all available information with the relevant authorities since the moment we learned that the aircraft had disappeared, in the early hours of Saturday 8th March. This includes the very first indications that MH370 may have remained airborne for several hours after contact was lost, which the Prime Minister referred to today.
This is truly an unprecedented situation, for Malaysia Airlines and for the entire aviation industry. There has never been a case in which information gleaned from satellite signals alone could potentially be used to identify the location of a missing commercial airliner. Given the nature of the situation and its extreme sensitivity, it was critical that the raw satellite signals were verified and analysed by the relevant authorities so that their significance could be properly understood. This naturally took some time, during which we were unable to publicly confirm their existence.
We were well aware of the ongoing media speculation during this period, and its effect on the families of those on board. Their anguish and distress increases with each passing day, with each fresh rumour, and with each false or misleading media report. Our absolute priority at all times has been to support the authorities leading the multinational search for MH370, so that we can finally provide the answers which the families and the wider community are waiting for.
We remain absolutely committed to sharing confirmed information with family members and the wider public in a fully open and transparent manner. However given the nature of the situation, the importance of validating new information before it is released into the public domain is paramount.
Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families of the 227 passengers and our 12 Malaysia Airlines colleagues and friends on board flight MH 370. They will remain at the center of every action we take as a company, as they have been since MH 370 first disappeared.
Today the airline issued this short statement:
The current general enquiry number +60378841234 for the MH 370 incident will change effective Monday, 17 March 2014 at 12.00 noon.
Moving forward, families of passengers and crew of MH 370 may call +603-87775770. This is a dedicated number for families only.
For media queries, kindly contact +603 8777 5698/ +603 8787 1276.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the passengers and our colleagues on board MH 370 as well as their families and loved ones.
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 operated with Boeing 777-2H7 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) remains missing with no sign of debris. There are reports the the airliner may have flown for up to five hours after the after radar contact was lost (the transponder was turned off). The mystery is deepening and the search area is broadening once again.
According to Reuters, “military radar data suggests a Malaysia Airlines jetliner missing for nearly a week was deliberately flown hundreds of miles off course, heightening suspicions of foul play among investigators, sources told Reuters on Friday.
Analysis of the Malaysia data suggests the plane, with 239 people on board, diverted from its intended northeast route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing and flew west instead, using airline flight corridors normally employed for routes to the Middle East and Europe, said sources familiar with investigations into the Boeing 777’s disappearance.
Two sources said an unidentified aircraft that investigators believe was flight MH 370 was following a route between navigational waypoints when it was last plotted on military radar off the country’s northwest coast.
This indicates that it was either being flown by the pilots or someone with knowledge of those waypoints, the sources said.”
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
If the Reuters report is correct, this means the aircraft was flying (for whatever reason) towards the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (see map above) or beyond into the Indian Ocean. This will probably broadened the search area towards and possibly into the Indian Ocean.
Oddly today (March 14), a 5.5 magnitude earthquake struck in the sea off the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, the U.S. Geological Survey reported via CNN.
Another report also deepens the mystery. Chinese researchers have reportedly detected a “seafloor event” in the waters between Malaysia and Vietnam around 2:55 am on Saturday. This is about 72 miles (116 km) northeast of the last known position at 1:30 am.
Read the full report from the Indian Express: CLICK HERE
Malaysia Airlines has issued this latest statement:
Malaysia Airlines reiterates that we will continue to give our full support in cooperating with the search and rescue mission which is coordinated by the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia (DCA) under the purview of the Ministry of Transport, Malaysia.
Malaysia Airlines is fully aware of the on-going media speculations and we have nothing further to add to the information we have already provided.
Our primary focus at this point in time is to care for the families of the passengers and crew of MH 370. This means providing them with timely information, travel facilities, accommodation, meals, medical and emotional support.
Malaysia Airlines will continue to provide regular updates to the general public via the media and our website on all matters affecting MH 370.
CNN Video: 9M-MRO is most likely at the bottom of the sea:
CNN Video: A tour of the Boeing 777 cockpit:
Malaysia Airlines retires MH 370 and MH 371 flight numbers, 9M-MRO may have flown for four hours after losing contact, no debris found
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) has retired the affected flight numbers and issued this statement:
As a mark of respect to the passengers and crew of MH 370 on March 8, 2014, the MH 370 and MH 371 flight codes will be retired from the Malaysia Airlines’ Kuala Lumpur- Beijing-Kuala Lumpur route.
With effect from March 14, 2014, the new flight number to replace MH 370 and MH 371 will be:-
MH 318 – Kuala Lumpur – Beijing
MH 319 – Beijing – Kuala Lumpur
There are no changes to the frequency of our services and we will continue to operate double daily services to Beijing.
Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families of our colleagues and passengers of MH 370.
In other news, the Wall Street Journal is reporting U .S. investigators helping to probe the disappearance of MH 370 now believe the Boeing 777-200 may have flown for four hours after losing contact with air traffic controllers due to the engine date. If true, this would dramatically require the widening of the search area.
However this information seems to be in dispute, as Reuters is reporting Malaysia Airlines has said previously that the Rolls-Royce Trent engines stopped transmitting engine condition reports when contact with the missing 9M-MRO was lost.
Meanwhile planes and ships were searching an area of the South China Sea where Chinese satellite images had shown what could be aircraft debris, but had so far searchers have not found any debris from MH 370.
Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE
The Australian explores the question of whether the crew passed out due to oxygen starvation because of a possible fuselage leak. The Australian looks at Helios Airways crash in Greece. Read the full article: CLICK HERE
In summary, there is a lot of conflicting information and reports out there and really no one as this time knows the true location of the lost Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420). No debris from the aircraft has been located despite some interesting reports. The direction the aircraft may have taken after losing radio contact and the distance it may have flown are all in dispute among the parties involved. Hopefully we will soon have closure on this tragedy.
Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Where in the world is 9M-MRO? As incredible as it seems in this modern age, this missing airplane is becoming reminiscent of the long-time search for the much smaller Amelia Earhart’s missing Beechcraft in the South Pacific Ocean.
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) missing flight MH 370 with 239 people on board remains lost and has become a bigger mystery. The search area has now been broadened. Malaysia is now asking for international help, especially from Europe, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to review the conflicting radar data.
Malaysia Air Force chief has denied military and government reports the Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) turned around and headed west to the Malacca Strait although this area is now part of the official search area.
The transponder was apparently turned off when it apparently turned to the west.
In summary, no one knows for sure where flight MH 370 has gone and there has been no confirmed debris found from the flight. It remains a mystery.
Read the full report by the BBC: CLICK HERE
New Straits Times has been comprehensively covering this story – here are all of their local articles: CLICK HERE
Pictorial video from New Strait Times:
Questions and answers on the MH 370 disappearance from the New York Times: CLICK HERE
Time Magazine: 6 mysterious airplane disappearances in aviation history: CLICK HERE
Malaysia Airlines has issued this statement:
Malaysia Airlines’ primary focus at this point in time is to care for the families of the passengers and crew of MH370. This means providing them with timely information, travel facilities, accommodation, meals, medical and emotional support. All these costs are borne by Malaysia Airlines.
We have deployed teams of caregivers consisting of trained MAS staff and volunteers from Mercy Malaysia and Tzu Chi Foundation. These caregivers are stationed at five different locations at Beijing and four different locations in Kuala Lumpur.
As of now, we have 115 family members in Kuala Lumpur and they are taken care of by 72 different caregivers. At least one caregiver is assigned to each family together with a Mandarin translator for the families from China.
The caregivers have been keeping the families updated on the search and rescue efforts as well as provide emotional support.
Equal amount of initial financial assistance are being given out to all families of passengers and crew over and above their basic needs. This amount is extended to families of all crew and passengers in Malaysia as well those from other nations.
We regret and empathise with the families and we will do whatever we can to ease.
Did Malaysia Airlines missing flight MH 370 fly west into the Strait of Malacca?, Cathay Pacific flight reports metal objects floating in the water off the South China Sea near Ho Chi Minh City
Malaysia’s military believes it traced the missing Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200 flight MH 370 into the Malacca Strait (northwest of Kuala Lumpur) according to this report by Reuters. According to the military, the aircraft changed course after passing over Kota Bharu and took a lower altitude and headed west to this large body of water (see map above).
Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) is still missing with 227 passengers and 12 crew members on board. The previous oil slick in the Gulf of Thailand (north of Kota Bharu) has been identified as not coming from the missing aircraft. No wreckage has been found in the Gulf of Thailand from the missing and presumed crashed airliner.
Meanwhile Malaysia has identified and issued photos of the two Iranians who used the stolen passports.
Read the full Reuters report: CLICK HERE
Video: Report on the two Iranians:
Meanwhile the chief of Interpol says he does not believe the missing airliner was due to terrorism.
Read the full report from Reuters: CLICK HERE
The New York Times offers this “Questions and Answers” (to common questions) on the missing MH 370: CLICK HERE
A Cathay Pacific Airways flight has reported a relatively large metal debris area off the Vietnam coast near Ho Chi Minh City.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Map of the area where the Cathay Pacific Airways flight has reported the floating metal debris:
At least two passengers used stolen passports to board Malaysia flight MH 370, U.S. Navy joins the search for the missing Boeing 777
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) flight MH 370 operated with Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) still remains missing. However a vessel from Singapore participating in the search has found “suspicious objects” according to the Los Angeles Times. The objects have no yet been conformed as coming from the aircraft. 40 ships 22 airplanes are searching a larger area around the discovered oil slick (see above). The U.S. Navy has joined the search. There are also some indications that the aircraft may have turned around according to the radar records.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Meanwhile at least two passengers travelled on flight MH 370 with stolen passports (some media reports have it at four passengers) adding to the suspicion of terrorism in bringing down the flight. According to CNN, the two passengers who used the stolen passengers appear to have purchased the tickets together. The passengers were using Beijing as a connection point for on-going travel to Europe.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
5 theories on what could have happened to MH 370 according to the The Straits Times: CLICK HERE
Malaysia Airlines issued this statement on March 9:
More than 24 hours after the lost of contact with Malaysia Airlines Flight MH 370, the search and rescue teams are still unable to detect the whereabouts of the missing aircraft.
The airline is doing its utmost to provide support to the affected family members, this includes immediate financial aid.
The airline has deployed a team of 94 caregivers consisting of well-trained staff and also Tzu Chi Foundation members to provide emotional support to the families. The airline will also be deploying another set of caregivers to Beijing later today.
Last night, a Malaysia Airlines’ Senior Management team arrived at Beijing to address the media and met with family members. Families of affected passengers in Kuala Lumpur were also met by the team.
Meanwhile, Malaysia Airlines will set up a command center at Kota Bharu, Malaysia or Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam as soon as the location of the aircraft is established and the airline will make the necessary arrangements.
The airline is continuously working with the authorities in providing assistance. In fearing for the worst, a disaster recovery management specialist from Atlanta, USA will be assisting Malaysia Airlines in this crucial time.
On Monday March 10 Malaysia Airlines issued this statement for the missing airplane:
The purpose of this statement is to update on emergency response activities at Malaysia Airlines.
On notification of the incident the following steps have been taken:-
1. Activation of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in the early morning of 8 March 2014. The EOC is the central command and control facility responsible for carrying out emergency management functions at the strategic level during a disaster.
2. In addition to the EOC, various departments of Malaysia Airlines are also addressing to all the different needs during this crisis.
1. Malaysia Airlines is working closely with the government of China to expedite the issuance of passports for the families intending to travel to Malaysia, as well as with the immigration of Malaysia on the issuance of their visas into Malaysia.
2. Malaysia Airlines is deploying an additional aircraft to bring the families from Beijing to Kuala Lumpur on 11 March 2014.
3. When the aircraft is located, a Response Coordination Centre (RCC) will be established within the vicinity to support the needs of the families. This has been communicated specifically to the families.
4. Once the Response Coordination Centre is operational, we will provide transport and accommodation to the designated areas for the family members.
5. Our oneworld partners have been engaged to help bring family members in other countries aside from China into Kuala Lumpur.
Search and Rescue
1. Malaysia Airlines has been actively cooperating with the search and rescue authorities coordinated by the Department of Civil Aviation Malaysia (DCA) and the Ministry of Transport
2. DCA has confirmed that search and rescue teams from Australia, China, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam, Philippines, New Zealand and the United States of America have come forward to assist. We are grateful for these efforts.
We also want to address a few common queries from the media.
We are receiving many queries about how the passengers with the stolen passports purchased their tickets. We are unable to comment on this matter as this is a security issue. We can however confirm that we have given all the flight details to the authorities for further investigation.
We also confirm that we are making necessary arrangements for MH 370 passengers’ families from Beijing to travel to Kuala Lumpur. However, flight details of the families’ arrival are highly confidential. This is to protect the privacy and well-being of the families during this difficult time and to respect their space. Our position is not to reveal any information on the flight or movements of the families.
Malaysia Airlines’ primary focus at this point in time is to care for the families of the passengers and crew of MH370. This means providing them with timely information, travel facilities, accommodation, meals, medical and emotional support. The costs for these are all borne by Malaysia Airlines.
All other Malaysia Airlines’ flights are as per schedule. The safety of our passengers and crew has always been and will continue to be of utmost importance to us.
The airline continues to work with the authorities and we appreciate the help we are receiving from all local and international parties and agencies during this critical and difficult time.
Malaysia Airlines reiterates that it will continue to be transparent in communicating with the general public via the media on all matters affecting MH 370.
Video: Follow MH 370 on radar via Flightradar24:
CNN explores the question of question of why there so few facts for the missing 777: CLICK HERE
Map: Google Maps.
Breaking News: Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 is missing, Vietnamese Navy says it crashed into the sea south of Phu Quoc Island, oil slick spotted, two stolen passports were used to board the aircraft
Malaysia Airlines (Kuala Lumpur) flight MH 370 (operated with the pictured Boeing 777-2H7 ER 9M-MRO, msn 28420) departed Kuala Lumpur at 0041 local time on March 8 bound for Beijing, China. The flight has gone missing and did not enter Chinese airspace. Radar contact was lost with the aircraft near Vietnam airspace over water (Gulf of Thailand). The aircraft was last reported to be flying at 35,000 feet. There was no communication from the crew about any problem. Search and Rescue units are now searching for the aircraft.
According to CNN, “the Vietnamese Navy confirmed the plane crashed into the Gulf of Thailand. According to Navy Admiral Ngo Van Phat, a regional commander, military radar recorded that the plane crashed into the sea south of Phu Quoc island.”
However no debris has been located.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
Read the latest report from Reuters: CLICK HERE
A 12-mile oil slick has been discovered between Malaysia and Vietnam by a Vietnamese Navy Antonov An-26 according to the New York Times. The last reported position of the aircraft was between Malaysia and Vietnam. It is unclear if this is from the aircraft.
Read the full report: CLICK HERE
There are now reports that at least two stolen passports were used to board the aircraft which is now raising the question that this may have led to a possible terrorist attack.
The Telegraph explores this issue (along with a picture of the oil slick): CLICK HERE
Phu Quoc Island is on the border of Vietnam and Cambodia, southwest of Phnom Penh and west of Ho Chi Minh City (Google Maps):
The airline initially issued this statement:
We deeply regret that we have lost all contacts with flight MH 370 which departed Kuala Lumpur at 12.41 am earlier this morning (March 8) bound for Beijing. The aircraft was scheduled to land at Beijing International Airport at 6.30 am local Beijing time. Subang Air Traffic Control reported that it lost contact at 2.40 am (local Malaysia time).
Flight MH 370 was operated on a Boeing 777-200 aircraft. The flight was carrying a total number of 239 passengers and crew – comprising 227 passengers (including 2 infants), 12 crew members. The passengers were of 13 different nationalities. Malaysia Airlines is currently working with the authorities who have activated their Search and Rescue team to locate the aircraft. Our team is currently calling the next-of-kin of passengers and crew.
Focus of the airline is to work with the emergency responders and authorities and mobilize its full support. Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected passengers and crew and their family members. The airline will provide regular updates on the situation.
The airline will provide regular updates on the situation. Meanwhile, the public may contact +603 7884 1234 for further info.
Malaysia Airlines issued this latest update midday on March 8:
Malaysia Airlines is still unable to establish any contact or determine the whereabouts of flight MH 370. Earlier today (March 8), Subang ATC had lost contact with the aircraft at 2.40 am. The last known position of MH370 before it disappeared off the radar was 065515 North (longitude) and 1033443 East (latitude).
We are still trying to locate the current location of the flight based on the last known position of the aircraft. We are working with the International search and rescue teams in trying to locate the aircraft. So far, we have not received any emergency signals or distress messages from MH 370. We are working with authorities and assure that all sources are deployed to assist with the search and rescue mission.
The passenger manifest will not be released until all families of the passengers have been informed. The flight was carrying a total number of 239 passengers and crew – comprising 227 passengers (including 2 infants) and 12 crew members.
We are deploying our “Go Team” to Beijing which will depart Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 4.30 pm with a team of caregivers and volunteers to assist the family members of the passengers.
The passengers are of 14 different nationalities. All crew on-board are Malaysians.
Please take note that the earlier statement did not include the number of Indian nationals. This was due to confusion between the country code of Indonesia and India.
The below table shows the latest number of passengers and their nationalities:-
|China/Taiwan||154 including infant|
|USA||3 including infant|
Our focus now is to work with the emergency responders and authorities and mobilize our full support.
Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected passengers and crew and their family members.
Shortly after midnight, Sunday March 9 local time, Malaysia Airlines issued this update:
Malaysia Airlines humbly asks all Malaysians and people around the world to pray for flight MH 370.
It has been more than 24 hours since we last heard from MH 370 at 1.30 am. The search and rescue team is yet to determine the whereabouts of the Boeing 777-200 aircraft.
An international search and rescue mission from Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam was mobilized this morning (March 8). At this stage, they have failed to find evidence of any wreckage. The sea mission will continue overnight while the air mission will recommence at daylight.
We are dispatching all information as and when we receive it. The situation in Beijing is also being monitored closely. As many families of passengers are in China, we have deployed our “Go Team” to Beijing with a team of caregivers and volunteers to assist the family members of the passengers.
Immediate families of passengers are advised to gather at Kuala Lumpur International Airport. Travel arrangements and expenses will be borne by Malaysia Airlines. Once, the whereabouts of the aircraft is determined, Malaysia Airlines will fly members of the family to the location.
Our sole priority now is to provide all assistance to the families of the passengers and our staff. We are also working closely with the concerned authorities in the search and rescue operation
Copyright Photo: Stefan Sjogren/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 777-2H6 ER 9M-MRO (msn 28420) is pictured arriving at Stockholm (Arlanda) before the accident.
We will update this initial report with more information as it becomes available.
Satellite Weather – Southeast Asia from Meteoblue. The current weather appears to be mostly clear over Vietnam:
Other Airline News: CLICK HERE