Wednesday, 12 March 2014

MH370 - India joins the search too, Malaysia claims it went near the Andaman and Nicobar Islands

The sheer absurdity of the MH370 disappearance continues to reach new heights. As if having a Boeing 777 with 239 passengers on board just vanish into nothingness - an modern airliner 63 meters (200 feet) long and weighing close to 300 tons fully loaded, not a piddly little single-engined aircraft - wasn't absurd enough, the behavior of the Malaysian authorities has been mind-boggling. Now they claim to have traced the aircraft all the way to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands! Couldn't they have told the Indian authorities about this sooner?

Just like I predicted in the previous post, the Indian Air Force, Navy and Coastguard have gotten involved in their search for the missing airliner, making India the 12th country to join the search for the plane.

Given the sheer ridiculousness of the plane's off-radar whereabouts, it's doubtful that they will find anything at all. The plane may be thousands of kilometers away from Indian territory, and the search might be a wild goose chase. In other circumstances, the search and the resources thrown into it would be completely justified, but the contradictory and sometimes meaningless information about the aircraft's whereabouts aren't helping. What the hell is going on here?

Anyway, assuming that the plane has a five-hour flight time after going away from the Straits of Malacca, and assuming that it took another hour longer to reach the Andaman Sea and go "poof", the plane would still have another four hours of fuel left. Even if this is a generous estimate - cut it down to three hours of flight time near the Andamans - that means that the plane could be anywhere between 2100 to 2700 kilometers away from its last known location. MH370 had enough fuel to reach Beijing and stay up for another 60 to 90 minutes in the air - that's enough to cross the Bay of Bengal and visit India, Sri Lanka or Bangladesh. The search area, if it keeps ballooning like this, is going to extend to the whole of the Bay of Bengal, or even head further south into the Indian Ocean, an area as large as India itself. Nobody's going to find the plane if the search area keeps growing like this!

The "Twilight Zone" scenario is going to continue for a while. Apart from scouring images for signs of aircraft wreckage, the only thing left to do is to wish the searchers "good luck", because they're really going to need it.

EDIT: One expert admits that the plane must have landed, and it seems that a phone could possibly ring out on water. (which I find extremely unlikely). And yes, it is amazing.

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