Friday, March 6, 2015

“Flight 370 showed that in today’s very connected world, the idea that we cannot know where every airplane is at any given moment has become unacceptable”

Rémi Jouty (Picture source)

Said : Rémi Jouty, the director of the French Bureau of Investigations and Analysis (FBIA), commenting on the ongoing search operations for the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 (a Boeing 777), which took off from Kuala Lumpur Airport and vanished en route to Beijing on March 8, 2014 with 239 people aboard. The FBIA has been advising investigators on the case.

According to a news report by Michael Forsythe and Keith Bradsher in The New York Times of March 5, 2015, the investigators are also considering, what they call, “rogue pilot theory,” as the most plausible explanation among several because some of the investigators and experts feel that deliberate human intervention, most likely by someone in the cockpit, may have caused the aircraft. A retired chief pilot of Malaysia Airlines, Nik Huzlan, is reported to be one of them. 

Incidentally, Huzlan has been a close friend of Zaharie Ahmad Shah, the pilot who flew the plane that fateful day, since last 30 years.

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Huzlan, while clarifying that he had never seen anything in more than 30 years of friendship that would suggest that Mr. Zaharie was capable of such a deed, said : “Based on logic, when you throw emotion away, it seems to point a certain direction which you can’t ignore.” “Your best friend can harbor the darkest secrets,” he reportedly added. The co-pilot, Fariq Abdul Hamid, is also being seen as the likely culprit.
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Four ships under contract by the Australian and Malaysian governments are searching the likely site spread over an area of 23,000-square miles in the Indian Ocean. Nearly half the area has been scoured so far but no trace of the missing plane has been found and the mystery over its disappearance continues. The job is expected to be completed by May.
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In an era where a missing mobile phone can be located in moments, it is hard to believe that a wide-body jetliner can simply vanish like the Flight 370. The need for closer flight tracking measures, including real-time streaming of flight data, is again being discussed within the aviation industry. It is reported that the International Civil Aviation Organization, a United Nations body, wants that "all airliners should be equipped to have the ability, by November 2016, to automatically report their position at least every 15 minutes, twice as often as the current average of around 30 minutes."

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