True, we clearly don't know enough.
The whole off route thing is super questionable now too, makes you think Silk Air 185, but then again why would the pilot need to go off course to achieve crashing.
We don't even know for sure that the aircraft "crashed", theoretically it could have landed at any one of hundreds of airports in dozens of countries !! All we know for sure is the transponder/s went "off line" !! The Iranians have now been discounted as terrorist suspects as they were fleeing to Europe to look for political asylum (according to the friend that helped them buy the tickets anyway). What I find hard to credit with all the electronic tracking gear in existence these days is that you can basically turn off the transponder/s and become invisible !! in a 777 !!!!!!!
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I was trying to follow this on airliners.net before, and I stopped. It was almost all speculation, and conspiracy theories. Besides the changed course seen on radar we still know nothing, and suspect we will still know nothing for a while.
On another note, this is a good read on Air France 447 which will likely come to play in this: https://www.informs.org/ORMS-Today/P...nce-Flight-447
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Many areas in that part of the world are not friendly towards 'Western' interests. We could potentially see another attack come from this.U.S. investigators suspect that Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 stayed in the air for about four hours past the time it reached its last confirmed location, according to two people familiar with the details, raising the possibility that the plane could have flown on for hundreds of additional miles under conditions that remain murky.
The investigators believe the plane flew for a total of five hours based on data automatically downloaded and sent to the ground from the Boeing Co. 777's engines as part of a routine maintenance and monitoring program.
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.
Six days after the mysterious disappearance prompted a massive international air and water search that so far hasn't produced any results, the investigation appears to be broadening in scope.
U.S. counterterrorism officials are pursuing the possibility that a pilot or someone else on board the plane may have diverted it toward an undisclosed location after intentionally turning off the jetliner's transponders to avoid radar detection, according to one person tracking the probe.
The investigation remains fluid, and it isn't clear whether investigators have evidence indicating possible terrorism or espionage. So far, U.S. national security officials have said that nothing specifically points toward terrorism, though they haven't ruled it out.
But the huge uncertainty about where the plane was headed, and why it continued flying so long without working transponders, has raised theories among investigators that the aircraft may have been commandeered for a reason that appears unclear to U.S. authorities. Some of those theories have been laid out to national security officials and senior personnel from various U.S. agencies, according to one person familiar with the matter.
At one briefing, according to this person, officials were told investigators are actively pursuing the notion that the plane was diverted "with the intention of using it later for another purpose."
As of Wednesday it remained unclear whether the plane reached an alternate destination or if it ultimately crashed, potentially hundreds of miles from where an international search effort has been focused.
In those scenarios, neither mechanical problems, pilot mistakes nor some other type of catastrophic incident caused the 250-ton plane to mysteriously vanish from radar.
The latest revelations come as local media reported that Malaysian police visited the home of at least one of the two pilots.
Boeing officials and a Malaysia Airlines official declined to comment.
The engines' onboard monitoring system is provided by their manufacturer, Rolls-Royce PLC, and it periodically sends bursts of data about engine health, operations and aircraft movements to facilities on the ground.
Of course it could be nothing but the longer this lasts, the more concerned I get.
It reads like the plot of a Tom Clancy/Clive Cussler novel.
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This whole story is also very ironic to me since I'm not a fan of flying. I had to fly a few months ago and on the return trip, I sat next to a pilot for the airline (we were on a 777) who assured me of how safe they are, how they can still land with no power, etc. This was also around the same time as the plane that landed at the wrong airport (which he also assured me that, while not impossible, was also highly unlikely). It's also amazing to me that in today's day and age of technology, satellite tracking, and all of that stuff, that something like this can just vanish for a week and counting with no clue as to its whereabouts. I keep hearing about satellites that can read license plates from orbit, but all China can do is offer up blurry blob pictures of something floating in the ocean?
I guess they need to make sure future models don't have systems that can be turned off by the crew or something? Especially after 9/11, I would think every plane would have a constantly on tracking system anyway (or do they? I am obviously an aviation layman).
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