Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, went missing on March 8th, one hour after take-off. The world watched as investigations began into the loss of the aircraft and the 227 passengers. The Boeing 777 jet was thought to be extremely off course and had been cleared from all radars, leading to concerns of hijacking by passengers.
Adding to suspicions of terrorism, two passengers on the flight were found to have been travelling on forged passports. The passengers, of Iranian descent (Pouria Nour Mohammad, 19, and Seyed Mohammed Rezar Delwar, 29), were investigated by Interpol and cleared of any relationship with terrorism. It is believed that both men were using the stolen information to seek asylum in other countries.
With the rest of the passengers cleared, investigations have turned to the crew members. The pilots (Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53, and First Officer Fariq Abdul Hamid, 27), seem to have no motives to hijack the aircraft, but they are not yet cleared. Authorities are still concerned with possible sabotage.
As off course as Flight MH370 was, retired Air Chief Marshal Houston believes that any data they can work with would be faulty, “We don’t have a precise aircraft location for six hours before the aircraft went into the water somewhere.” As a result, it’s unclear if the wreckage will ever be found.
While the pilots and crew members have not yet been cleared, authorities are also looking into other possibilities. Investigation is going into the possibility of the cargo or food being tampered with before take-off, as well as the possibility that there might have been a disaster that crew and passengers were unable to stop.
Billie Vincent, former civil aviation security chief, believes, with the passengers cleared, it’s possible that a fire was the cause for the crash:
My guess is that in the horrendous conditions that this crew was operating when they were turning that airplane was that the cockpit is full of smoke, you can’t even see the instruments. As opposed to being hijackers, the crew were heroically trying to save the airplane, themselves and the passengers when this catastrophe hit.
The truth is that we may never know what caused the crash of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 or its passengers if the wreckage is not found. Unfortunately, the signal from the flight data recorder is a finite thing and, if the crash site is not found soon, it might be lost forever.