Tuesday, 8 March 2022

Remembering Malaysia MH 370



Today marks the 8th anniversary of the disappearance of the Malaysian 777 and even though bits and pieces believed to be from the stricken 370 have been found, the actual aircraft is still missing. 
Flight MH 370 was a scheduled international passenger flight that disappeared on the 8th March 2014, while flying from Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KUL/WMKK), Malaysia to Beijing-Capital International Airport (PEK/ZBAA) China. Flight 370 last made voice contact with air traffic control at 01:19 local time when it was over the South China Sea, less than an hour after take off. The aircraft disappeared from air traffic controllers' radar screens at 01:21 local time. Malaysian military radar continued to track Flight 370 as it deviated from its planned flight path and crossed the Malay Peninsula. Flight 370 left the range of Malaysian military radar at 02:22 while over the Andaman Sea, 200 nautical miles (370 km; 230 miles) northwest of Penangin in north western Malaysia. The aircraft was carrying 12 Malaysian crew members and 227 passengers from 15 nations; six of those were Australians. Investigators thought the most likely location for the jet was in the Indian Ocean after analysing information from the British satellite telecommunications company Immarsat. Likely locations for the airliner could be tracked by knowing the distance from the fixed satellite, but it would also change depending which direction the plane was flying in after its last known position and at what speed it was travelling at. If it was flying north then possible locations could stretch as far as the border between Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan to Thailand. But if it was flying south possible sites could range from Indonesia to the southern Indian Ocean. Authorities believe the Indian Ocean is the most likely site After 7 years of extensive searches and many possible sighting of floating objects, Investigators have found no trace of the Malaysia Airlines 777 or it's 239 passengers.
Initially search efforts focused on the South China Sea area. On the 24 March 2014 further analysis of the Inmarsat satellite data indicated that MH370 flew south and ended its flight in the southern part of the Indian Ocean. A surface search was conducted of probable impact areas along an arc, identified by calculations based on Inmarsat data. The search was carried out from the 18th March - 28th April 2014. This search effort was undertaken by an international fleet of aircraft and ships with the search areas over this time progressing generally from an initial southwest location along the arc in a north-easterly direction. No debris associated with MH370 was identified either from the surface search, acoustic search or from the ocean floor search in the vicinity of acoustic detection, which were initially believed to have been from the pingers on the flight recorders. The ocean floor search was completed on the 28th May 2014.
On the 26th June 2014 the ATSB published a new search area based on refinements to the analysis of both the flight and satellite data. The priority area of approximately 60,000 km2 extends along the arc for 650 km in a northeast direction from Broken Ridge, an underwater ridge. The width of the priority search area is 93 km.
On the 29th July 2015 a flapperon washed ashore on the French island of Réunion in the Indian Ocean. On August 5 it was established to have been from MH370.

Flight 370 was operated by a nearly 12 year old Boeing 777-2H6ER, registration 9M-MRO (MSN 28420). This was the 404th Boeing 777 produced, it first flew on 14th May 2002 and was delivered to Malaysia Airlines on 31st May 2002. For the sake of the loved ones left behind and for the staff at Malaysia Airlines I hope they find the aircraft soon.


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