Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Lost Plane

At time of writing this, late yesterday afternoon, no concrete information on the fate of Malaysian airlines Flight MH370, lost since Saturday/Sunday, had emerged. First thoughts now go to relatives and loved ones of the 239 passengers and crew, still waiting in dread for what is almost certainly going to be the worst kind of news.

I've been following comments on a professional pilots' forum in the Rumours and News section. At least there, I suspect one has a better chance of commenters who actually know what they are talking about.

Astrology, at a time like this, always seems to me as akin to ambulance chasing, so I'll leave that alone.

Using Occam's Razor (simplest answer is usually the best one), I'd rely on the theory that some electronic/electrical fault in the flight's instruments, including the facility for pilot communication with ground staff, meant that the the pilot decided not to follow the plane's set route, while remaining unable to communicate the fault, decided to turn back and head for some place safe to land. After that, Occam's Razor becomes blunter...Did the original fault spread to other controls, maybe oxygen supply was cut off, so that the plane ditched and crashed either in an area of sea where full search has yet to be carried out, or in a jungle area of land?

Update: Recent news reports, though, indicate Malaysian military is now back-tracking on an earlier statement that it appeared the plane had altered course. All is confusion!

With technology at such an advanced level these days, it seems unlikely that a huge airliner could be allowed to simply disappear. Let us hope that efforts to produce new safeguards for ground communication methods in future airliners will be adopted.

As Martin Robbins wrote, in finishing his piece Cutting Through the Bullshit Surrounding Flight MH370
The irony is that, buried in this avalanche of speculation, there are some really interesting stories that have been largely ignored. How is it, for example, that for all the supposed increases in airline security in the wake of 9/11, checks at airports are so bad that people with stolen passports can apparently travel at will? And why is it that in an era of high speed 4G broadband, when 40-year-old technology can transmit data back from beyond the edge of the solar system, we still have to send ships and divers to retrieve data from a plane, rather than simply transmitting it in real time?

LATER: This article by Vijandren Ramadass has the best theory I've seen so far.

I'm not going to mention astrology again, other than to say that this situation is reflecting the worst side of Neptune.


mike said...

I think that there has only been one other case of a missing-in-action commercial airliner. It has an interesting tale:

You had a fellow in Lawton that disappeared for two days in the storm drains:

We won't know until we know, Twilight! Conspiracy theories are starting to pile-up on the internet and in people's brains. I hope that regardless of the fate, this airliner is found for the sake of closure for the living.

LB said...

Twilight ~ No matter how you look at it, it's terribly sad and very mysterious. I've had a hard time keeping up with developments, so your post helped to fill me in - thanks.

Twilight said...

mike ~ Thanks for the links. Thankfully that lost plane wasn't carrying a load of passengers....which I'd think would be the preferred way to go for any would-be hi-jackers.

As you say, conspiracy theories abound: hi-jack, kidnap, theft of cargo, terrorism...any or all failed or still in progress. None feels right to me though, all things considered.

For those waiting for news on the ground, this must be absolute torture.

Twilight said...

LB ~ It's impossible to keep up, rumours are still flying around, and will continue to do so, I guess, absent some concrete sighting.

Latest seems to be that a worker on an oil rig reported seeing a plane on fire, around the time of the plane's disappearance, high in the sky and falling, somewhere off the Vietnam coastline, even gave authorities the relative coordinates.
Searches ensued but nothing found.

♥ Sonny ♥ said...

I agree with the links you quoted and posted Annie.. we are in 2014 and know what happens all over the globe in a milisecond.. these planes info is way old school even with all the changes since 911 and that really doesnt make sense.

as my Nana used to say-- there's a rat in the wood pile~!

Twilight said...

Sonny ~ I suppose that because major passenger plane incidents have become more rare, less efforts have been made to improve what seemed to be adequate safety provisions - this could cause them to re-think.

Twilight said...

To all ~~ Latest is that Chinese government agency has reportedly released satellite images that could possibly show parts of the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, either floating (seems unlikely) or on the seabed (sea apparently not excessively deep there).

Twilight said...

To All (again) ~ Seems now that the Chinese report of debris wasn't relevant.

~ At half past midnight I read that

Aviation investigators and national security officials believe the plane flew for a total of five hours based on data automatically downloaded and sent to the ground from the Boeing Co. BA -0.99% 777's engines as part of a routine maintenance and monitoring program.

WSJ has confirmed that the pilot had the ability to manually turn off the transponder on Flight MH370. A mid-air catastrophe could have destroyed it. Why is the transponder so significant? WSJ's Jason Bellini has #TheShortAnswer.

That raises a host of new questions and possibilities about what happened aboard the widebody jet carrying 239 people, which vanished from civilian air-traffic control radar over the weekend, about one hour into a flight to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur.

I'm not sure whether this news is good or bad.

Somnath said...

Hey Twilight,
Thanks for sharing this post.Feeling bad for all of the passengers.I don't think that there's astrology is related to this,in fact the technology has to learn a lesson from this happening.

Twilight said...

Somnath ~ Hi there! I agree, there will be some hard lessons to learn after this sad mystery is finally solved.

Twilight said...

To All ~ Once again all leads have been discredited according to a press conference today:

-Basically all leads were inaccurate: Chinese had released satellite photos on error.
-The Malaysian police did not visit the house of the pilots.
-The radar plot NW of Penang was investigated because Malaysian authorities want to check every lead.
-Malaysia shared raw radar data with other countries.
-SAR focus in now on South China Sea
-RR data from engines was never received.
-Malaysia has nothing to hide.

So...the mystery persists. How and why all these stories have arisen only to be knocked down is a mystery in itself.

Twilight said...

To all ~
From ABC News website

U.S. officials have an "indication" the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner may have crashed in the Indian Ocean and is moving the USS Kidd to the area to begin searching.

It will take another 24 hours to move the ship into position, a senior Pentagon official told ABC News.

"We have an indication the plane went down in the Indian Ocean," the senior official said.

The official said there were indications that the plane flew four or five hours after disappearing from radar and that they believe it went into the water.

Pentagon officials said that the USS Kidd was being moved at the request of Malaysia and is heading towards an area where the Indian Ocean and the Andaman Sea meet. It has helicopters aboard that can scour the area.