Mauritius/Australia: Australia’s Transport Safety Bureau confirmed on Friday, October 7, 2016 that the debris discovered on the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius on May 10, 2016 was indeed a part of the missing Malaysian aircraft MH370. The located fragment is a small part of the aircraft’s wing.
It is the third piece of debris to be definitively linked to MH370, the first being a flaperon discovered on the French island of Reunion in July 2015 and the second being an outboard wing flap found off the coast of Tanzania in June 2016. But the main wreckage or the flight data recorders have not yet been found.
“It does not, however, provide information that can be used to determine a specific location of the aircraft,” Chester said.
The Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 was a scheduled international passenger flight that disappeared on March 8,2014 while flying from Kuala Lumpur International Airport, Malaysia, to Beijing Capital International Airport in China. The last voice contact made with the air traffic control was at 01:19 MYT, March 8 (17:19 GMT,7 March) when it was over the South China Sea. This was less than an hour after take-off. The aircraft disappeared from the ATC radar at 01:22 MYT. The aircraft deviated westward and was tracked by the Malaysian military till 02:22 while over the Andaman Sea, after which it left the range of the military.
The aircraft, a Boeing 777-200ER was carrying 12 Malaysian crew members and 227 passengers from 15 nations.
A multinational search effort was issued and Malaysia established the Joint Investigation Team to incident, with foreign aviation authorities and experts. All the searches have established that the flight did not send any distress signal nor were there any technical problems with the aircraft. There were no indications of bad weather conditions either. Two passengers were found to be carrying stolen passports but upon investigation, they came out clean. The prime suspect of the incident will be the captain if the plane vanished due to human intervention.
Based on analysis of the satellite communications, the aircraft turned south after passing north of Sumatra and the flight continued for five hours with little deviation in its track, ending when its fuel was exhausted.
With the presumed loss of all on-board, Flight 370 is the second deadliest incident involving a Boeing 777 and the second deadliest incident in Malaysian Airlines’ history, behind Flight 117 in both categories.
All searches for the main wreckage till now have been in vain. It has been announced that of not found, all searches will be terminated after December 2016.