No Mayday, then Gone

Saturday, March 8, 2014
By George Hatcher

I could speculate here about what caused the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, but that is all it would be: speculation. One can look at the type of plane, the weather, and various circumstances, but the truth is that the devil is in the details, and we just don’t know the details. The investigation will turn them up; the investigation can be a long road down a circular path.

It makes it more difficult when there was no distress call. No mayday. Think of this: if something happens and you’re on a plane rapidly losing altitude—or with catastrophic issues which could be anything on a plane from a drunk grandpa to a bomb on board to a bad repair failing, to a sudden system failure due to frozen pitot tubes, what is the first thing that you are going to do if you’re part of the flight crew? That’s right—the first thing will be to fix the issue, and stay in the air. The last thing to do after the crisis is handled is to call ATC and let them know what’s going on.

But because there was no distress call, we can assume that whatever happened happened fast. And now the wildest speculation of all is that the two people with fake passports were terrorists carrying a bomb. Do we need to go down that thought path? There are plenty of things that could have gone wrong although the 777 has a a stellar safety record.

Now too, there is even speculation where the plane went down, apparently. There’s an oil slick approximately where the teams are searching. Maybe they’re right. Maybe under that slick, there’s a beacon to hear.

Still, I keep hoping there’s a raft somewhere full of survivors.

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