Skip to comments.Malaysia Airlines MH370: Authorities Deny Chaos in Plane Search Effort
Posted on 03/12/2014 3:39:11 PM PDT by nickcarraway
Malaysian authorities have denied their efforts to find a missing passenger jet are mired in chaos, as they again doubled the search area to include areas hundreds of kilometres from the plane's flight path.
At a combative news conference on the fifth day of the vast hunt, transport minister Hishammuddin Hussein said officials would "never give up hope" of finding Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 and its 239 passengers and crew.
The hunt, involving 42 ships and 39 aircraft from several nations, had focused on Vietnam's South China Sea coast where the plane last made contact on Saturday.
But the search has been expanded to include the Andaman Sea, west of Thailand, and the Malacca Strait, between the Malay Peninsula and the Indonesian island of Sumatra, both hundreds of kilometres away from where the plane vanished.
The change to the search area has fuelled allegations that the response is in disarray and lacking coordination.
Mr Hussein told the press conference a military radar had shown a plane heading west toward the Malacca Strait.
But he could not say whether it was the same aircraft or confirm how low the plane was flying.
"That is why we're searching in two [further] areas," he said.
'Deliberate act' by pilots
As the mystery around flight MH370 deepens, a former head of safety at Qantas tells NewsRadio a deliberate act by the pilots is the only logical explanation. "That's why we are deploying all our best resources and also aircraft... from near neighbouring countries in these two areas."
Overall, the search areas cover 27,000 square nautical miles.
Twelve nations are now involved in the effort, with India, Japan and Brunei joining the search.
The United States and the aircraft's manufacturer Boeing are also involved.
Officials have enraged passengers' relatives and sparked international ridicule for a series of contradictory and vague statements regarding the plane's possible fate and circumstances surrounding its disappearance.
"We are still doing search-and-rescue operations and we still have hope," civil aviation director Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said.
"Chances of survival depend also on a lot of criteria because we don't know where the aircraft is."
Asked whether the search had now collapsed into confusion, Mr Hishammuddin said: "I don't think so. It's far from it. It's only confusion if you want it to be seen as confusion".
"I think it's not a matter of chaos. There are a lot of speculations that we have answered in the last few days," he said.
Air force chief Rodzali Daud said authorities were investigating an unidentified flying object about 320 kilometres north-west of the Malaysian state of Penang around the time the plane vanished early on Saturday.
That is hundreds of kilometres to the west of the plane's planned flight path between Kuala Lumpur and Beijing.
Authorities have said radar data records indicated the "possibility" that the plane may have attempted to "turn back" to Kuala Lumpur shortly before its disappearance, but have not revealed the specifics of the data.
"The last plot happened at 2:15am (local time) ... 200 miles north-west of Penang. We are corroborating this. We are not saying this is MH370. It's an unidentified plot," General Rodzali said.
But the officials said they still did not know where the plane was despite repeatedly expanding the search area.
Map: Search area widens for missing plane INFOGRAPHIC: Authorities have widened the search area for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, which disappeared with 239 people on board. (Reuters) Family of missing Australians hoping for a miracle
About two-thirds of the 227 passengers and 12 crew now presumed to have died aboard the plane were Chinese.
Other nationalities included 38 Malaysians, seven Indonesians, six Australians, five Indians, four French and three Americans.
The missing Australians are Brisbane couple Rod and Mary Burrows, Springfield Lakes couple Robert and Catherine Lawton and Sydney couple Gu Naijun and Li Yuan.
Mr Burrows's mother Irene Burrows says her heart is aching.
"I spoke to him a couple of days beforehand and he was very excited about going. It's not their first overseas trip but it was planned for a long time," she said.
"[We are] just waiting for some sort of news. If they've found the wreckage or if they can tell us ... how can a plane just disappear?"
Perth-based New Zealand man Paul Weeks was also on the flight, en route to Mongolia to begin a fly-in, fly-out role with mining contractor Transwest.
China has deployed 10 satellites using high-resolution earth imaging capabilities, visible light imaging and other technologies to "support and assist in the search and rescue operations".
The fact that at least two passengers on board had used stolen passports has raised suspicions of foul play, but Interpol says the pair has no link to any terrorist organisations.
The best explanation for this mess is that the authorities are holding back information, as Jack Cashill (author of “First Strike,” TWA 800 book) said on Coast-to-Coast.
I’m still going with the UFO angle.
I’m still going with the UFO angle.
He found it hard to believe that after all this time, the authorities had found nothing -- no radio reports from the plane, no black boxes, no witness reports, etc.
He compared it to TWA 800, where he believes the gov't found the black boxes days before they "officially" found them, in order to have time to think up a cover story.
Bottom line, he thinks the cover-up would be either of a terrorist attack, as happened to a plane on the runway in Thailand not long after TWA 800 and was officially ascribed to a hot runway and fumes, but which actually had targeted the then-Thai leader and missed, or a cover-up of an accidental gov't shoot-down as in TWA 800.
He's seen gov't investigations turned into cover-ups, with TWA 800 and the Thai case.
If you have to deny chaos, there’s chaos.
How about a weapon that fries electronics, including the black box. Late at night, pitch black inside and outside plane at 35,000 feet and nowhere to go but down.
EMP test? They will find the plane within a week or two, with nothing noticeable wrong and will attribute it to pilot error.