Tonight we’re hearing that a Chinese satellite has picked up images that could be pieces of Malaysia’s Flt. MH370 (speculating) in the ocean scattered over a 12 mile swath. Get this: the images were “captured” at 11 a.m. on March 9th, the day after the flight’s disappearance, but released until Wednesday, March 12th. The speculation/possibility comes from the size of what is believed to be floating objects. We’ve heard that Vietnamese military said MH370 made a turn back west, in the opposite direction it was heading, and made it to the Malacca Strait, but this report says the debris (if it is debris) is in the general area where the flight was first thought to ‘go missing,” off the southern tip of Vietnam. Still very puzzling is the fact that two transponders were turned off, and according to every source I’ve seen, transponders on the 777 must be turned off manually. The dotted line on the map below shows the path the military said the flight unexpectedly took. The straight line shows the planned flight path. The search by India in the Malacca Strait and the Andaman Sea has not been abandoned as of this minute. See photos of possible ocean debris below.
On March 8th there were reports that a pilot flying to Narita, Japan, in a position close enough to where MH370 was believed to be, was asked by Vietnamese air controllers to make contact with MH370 through his plane’s emergency frequency, which would establish 370′s position. He did establish contact, but with a lot of frequency interference, but heard a man “mumbling,” and then contact was lost. He believes the voice was that of co-pilot Fariq Abdul Hamid, although he says it could have been Captain Shah.
“That was the last time we heard from them, as we lost the connection,” the pilot said, adding that he thought nothing of the lost contact since it happens frequently — until he learned of MH370 never landing.
“If the plane was in trouble, we would have heard the pilot making the Mayday distress call,” the pilot said. “But I am sure that, like me, no one else up there heard it.
“Following the silence, a repeat request was made by the Vietnamese authorities to try establishing contact with them.” Source: The Blaze
According to the Chinese news agency, Xinhua, the largest of the suspected pieces of debris is about 79 feet (24 metres) by 72 feet (22 metres).
The objects identified by a Chinese satellite were spread across an area with a radius of 12 miles.
Vietnam has now sent a plane to the area where the images were taken. Source: Sky
Another description of size and shape of objects spotted:
The objects aren’t small: 13 by 18 meters (43 by 59 feet), 14 by 19 meters (46 by 62 feet) and 24 by 22 meters (79 feet by 72 feet). For reference, the wingspan of an intact Boeing 777-200ER like the one that disappeared is about 61 meters (200 feet) and its overall length is about 64 meters (210 feet).
The images were captured around 11 a.m. on March 9 — which was the day after the plane went missing — but weren’t released until Wednesday.
The Chinese agency gave coordinates of 105.63 east longitude, 6.7 north latitude, which would put it in waters northeast of where it took off in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and south of Vietnam, near where the South China Sea meets the Gulf of Thailand. Source: CNN
Some sources are doubtful that the size and shape of the pieces could be from a 777:
But not every expert was convinced this is it. Clive Irving, a senior editor with Conde Nast Traveler, said that the size of the pieces — since they are fairly square and large — “don’t conform to anything that’s on the plane.”
Tom Haueter, a former NTSB aviation safety director, said he’d be “surprised” if the objects came from the plane, rationalizing that anything that big wouldn’t float. Source: CNN (see link above)
A video at Sky interviewed Captain Ross “Rusty” Almer, a former instructor on the Boeing 777. He said the area where MH370 was thought to be, “over the Gulf of Thailand” is some of the “black” or “blind” spots in the world, where “you cannot communicate for some reason,” so “perhaps at that time there was “no data transmission between the aircraft and the airline,” or air traffic control. Captain Almer said when an airplane hits water it basically “disintegrates” unless it hits the water “like a dart,” and goes straight down.
MH370 signed-off with Malaysian air controllers with “Okay, received, goodnight,” when told that it was entering Vietnam’s airspace. I am assuming that the pilot headed to Japan was asked to contact the flight after the sign-off, as it was Vietnam asking, not Malaysia.
Related and Background:
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