8 comments on “MH370 – A Plausible Explanation?

  1. The slow decompression theory makes a lot of sense. Out of 239 passengers and 6 crew members, one of them would probably have had a satellite phone, and could have called for help. The fact that no such call was made, points to unconscious passengers due to slow decompression. The mumbling of the pilot to another pilot 30 minutes ahead, supports the slow decompression drunken-like state that is a symptom. The confirmation that the plane ran for 7 hours until it ran out of fuel, is the same thing that happened in the Payne Stewart jet slow decompression. After decompression, the internal temperature in the plane could reach minus 30 degrees which would interfere with sensitive computer equipment. The absence of terrorist Internet chatter basically eliminates terrorism from consideration.

    • I thought this theory was plausible, but there is inconsistencies. The aircraft would have continued on its set FP, meaning it would have headed to Beijing – and then kept going until it ran out of fuel. ADS-B, ACARS and squawking would have continued, but they stopped. There seems to be a delibrate effort to disguise (hide) the aircraft. Current thinking is leaning more and more to sabotage, piracy and deliberate intervention by the PIC. I thought initially that this scenario was unlikely. It now appears that I may have been wrong.

  2. I don’t think there is a cover up or that the Pilots were involved, at least in the beginning.

    I’m not a triple 7 jock, but am an ATP with over 10,000 hours (4,000 in heavies) and a good idea of how aircraft and avionics work, plus I have a few longtime friends who are senior 777 captains. Oh, and I just bought the B777 Training manual online for $8.95.

    According to the manual and what I know having done some preflights and walk arounds of 777s.

    On a B777, much of the avionics (aircraft electronics) are in 2 locations and separate areas of the airplane. The flight deck has the human interface controls (knobs, switches and displays) and the electronics which actually do the work are in the main electronics bay (MEB) located under the flight deck and between the nose wheel well and either the Cargo Hold depending. There are 3 access doors or holds; upon the model and configuration.

    The Transponder, ACARS and Radios in the MEB go to antenna switchers (XPDR) and antennas. The transponders (yes there are two not one) go through an antenna switcher and amplifier. The ACARS system has its antenna in the top of the aircraft (a/c). The voice communications radios are configured as the transponder and have their own antennas and switches.

    ALSO, the MEB is located pretty much under the main cabin doors, where most passengers come into the aircraft. It has 3 access doors (hatches) 1 is from the outside behind the front landing gear, the second is behind the flight deck bulkhead (wall) and the 3rd is from the forward CARGO HOLD.
    Depending upon the configuration, there are also Crew quarters (bunks and seats) which may also may be accessible to both the cargo hold and the passenger compartment.

    SO KNOWING ALL OF THIS:

    1. Hijackers are put into a LD6 cargo container 5x5x 10feet (fine for 2 or 3 folks) The conspirator on the ground puts the container fully forward; critical so the guys could get out & have access to the MEB (Main Electronics Bay).
    2. Alternatively, the same guys get into forward hold and the MEB directly from the tarmac along with their tools, equipment and weapons etc.
    3. Takeoff and Hijackers go to work in the MEB
    4. There they have access the electronics, cockpit power, pressurization, antenna connections, etc.
    5. First they disconnect the ACARS and then the Transponder and lastly the COMM. (No one up front knows because all the indications are that everything is working fine.
    6. Hence the normal radio call on the hand-off from KL Center (Kuala Lampur FIR) to Singapore FIR or to Hochiminh FIR. (BTW the ACARS transmitter receiver is also used by the FliteFone so no one could have phoned for help.)
    7. Hijackers enter the cabin either from the passenger access panel from the MEB or perhaps they cause a serious flight deck problem by turning off some critical cockpit display which would only be solved in the MEB. Bingo. Out jump the Hijackers with their AK or 9mm and they have control of the airplane.
    8. I would look for 1 or at the most 2 passenger conspirators. Maybe the aviation engineer going to work in China?
    9. The first course change was probably done by just changing the heading on the auto-pilot and perhaps the first change in altitude with the A/P as well.
    10. Subsequent erratic changes in altitude and heading were most certainly the hijackers trying to fly. Any airline pilot (except perhaps an Air-France copilot) would have instinctively made smooth inputs to the controls and never have overstressed, over-sped or exceeded the altitude ceiling of the a/c. (At that altitude and airspeed small changes in the controls can cause HUGE changes in the aircraft.) (Altitude restrictions also have to do with sudden loss of control due to air density as well as pressurization and fuselage limitations.)
    11. Perhaps they climbed to 43,000 feet to black out the passengers and flight attendants, but that could have been done by just changing the pressurization controls which could be done from the cockpit. Or from MEB as the pressurization unit is down there too, or that could have been tracking error? Certainly the descent from 43,000 to 23,000 was not accurate.
    12. The hijackers continue with the mission and perhaps convince the pilot to land the plane and save the passengers and himself. (It is doubtful the hijackers would have chosen the young co-pilot as he probably couldn’t handle a landing into an unimproved or low tech runway).
    13. They landed at some remote strip and hopefully will be freed at some point.
    14. The hijackers would likely kill or detain the flightdeck crew for two reasons.
    A. They know where the plane is and risk disclosing it’s location
    B. They could fly it out when needed.

    So that is a serious and very plausible scenario. So the folks to look at are the cargo and ground crews and perhaps one or two on the passenger manifest.

    You say, it would take someone with access and intimate knowledge of the 777 etc.
    Well that could be true, but the OFFICIAL BOEING 777 TRAINING MANUAL is available on-line for less than $20.00 as a PDF.

    It’s all there, including where to cut the power or pull the circuit breakers or disconnect the antenna.
    Access hatches and doors. Motorman’s guide to hijacking a B777.

    • BTW I have 2 pretty cool simulators. One helicopter and one 737. Check out http://www.opencockpits.com. I use a HiDef video projector for front view and 8 LCDs and LEDs for cockpit. Run either Microsoft Flight Sim X-Gold with great terrain add ons or X Plane but thats more expensive because it doesn’t support 6 monitors per computer.

      • LOL! I also run a simulator. I switch between MS FS9, MS FSX-Gold and Prepar3d by Lockheed-Martin. I did have X-Plane 9 & 10, but I found my Windows-based PC had issues loading them…..and they had a higher learning curve. It appears that the MH370 PIC also had an expensive simulator setup.

    • Thank you for your valuable insight into the layout of the B777. I do like your theory on how the cockpit incursion/intrusion occurred. I had not considered that personnel could enter the aircraft from the freight hold area. I suppose I had considered that the holds were unpressurised and not connected to passenger/flight crew areas. Of course, I realise this is not the case. I had considered some of your other points and agree with the way you describe the changes in direction and altitude. Of course, this is a “red-eye” flight and most of the passengers would be asleep, and thus unaware of changes to the FP. If this is a “terrorist” action, I would have expected responsibility to be claimed by a group. This has not occurred. I am coming to opinion that the longer the aircraft is unfound, the greater the chance of human intervention or interference. Curiously, the media reports of mobile phones ringing days after the aircrafts “loss” supports your theory. Mobile phones don’t work underwater!

      I am suprised (but then again, I should not be) that aircraft training and operating manuals are readily freely available. I feel they should be restricted to legitimate aviation industry users, but that still wouldn’t prevent them getting into the wrong hands. The internet is an invaluable source of information for all things. Interestingly one of my emergency service colleague’s thoughts also mirrors what you have stated here.

      My experience with aviation is as a aeromedical officer in military and civilian areas of operations.

  3. People often overlook history when trying to interpret current events. The Helios Jet decompression accident resulted in the pilots being incapacitated first, but after that a flight attendant survived and tried to fly the plane but was not competent to do so, and the plane crashed.

    It is possible that on Flight 370 some person on the flight survived the pilots and tried to fly the plane, but was unable to do so competently, just like in the Helios tragedy. That would explain why the plane changed directions and altitudes in a strange manner. If people will just study airline history such as Helios and the FAA advisories on the 777, instead of looking for bogeymen and terrorists, they may be surprised at what they find. I am reminded of stories about husbands who mislay their possessions and then blame their spouse, kids, non-existant burglars, etc., and then a day of two later, the husband finds his possession exactly where forgot he had laid it two days earlier. We have me the enemy and he is us – Pogo.

    Below is info on the Helios tragedy from Wikipedia:

    He then spoke to the ground engineer and repeatedly stated that the “cooling ventilation fan lights were off”.[3] The engineer (the one who had conducted the pressurization leak check) asked “Can you confirm that the pressurization panel is set to AUTO?” The captain, however, disregarded the question and instead asked in reply, “Where are my equipment cooling circuit breakers?”.[12] This was the last communication with the aircraft.[13]

    At 11:49, flight attendant Andreas Prodromou entered the cockpit and sat down in the captain’s seat.[18] Prodromou held a UK Commercial Pilot License,[19] but was not qualified to fly the Boeing 737. Crash investigators concluded that Prodromou’s experience was insufficient for him to gain control of the aircraft under the circumstances.[18]

  4. What might have happened to Flight 370 is similar to Helios Flight 522:

    1. The Federal Aviation Administration issued a worldwide alert last year after discovering a 40-centimetre crack on one Boeing 777 plane, underneath the plane’s satellite antenna and warning that the flaw ”could lead to rapid decompression and loss of structural integrity of the airplane”. Boeing is trying to dispute that this Boeing 777 was covered by that alert.

    However, a spokesman for the FAA, Allen Kenitzer, told Fairfax Media that MH370 was covered by the directive. Asked directly if the MH370 was covered by the directive, Mr Kenitzer replied in an email: ‘‘Yes’’. Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/world/us-warnings-on-boeing-safety-applied-to-missing-malaysia-airlines-plane-20140313-hvi0y.html#ixzz2wXMxN4OL

    2. Any structural failure related to the flaw could not only have led to a decompression that left the 239 passengers and crew on the missing Malaysia flight unconscious, it may also have disabled satellite communications, including the Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS), which transmits data of the plane’s location automatically.

    3. The mumbling of the pilot to another pilot 30 minutes ahead, supports the slow decompression drunken-like state that is a symptom.

    [It] also explains why another pilot 30 minutes ahead heard ‘mumbling’ from MH370 pilots. [VHF comms would be unaffected by SATCOM equipment failure].’’ ‘‘A slow decompression [e.g. from a golf ball-sized hole] would have gradually impaired and confused the pilots before cabin altitude [pressure] warnings sounded,’’ the post said. ‘‘If the decompression was slow enough, it’s possible the pilots did not realise to put on oxygen masks until it was too late.

    http://www.smh.com.au/world/us-warnings-on-boeing-safety-applied-to-missing-malaysia-airlines-plane-20140313-hvi0y.html

    4. The confirmation that the plane ran for 7 hours until it ran out of fuel, is the same thing that happened in the Payne Stewart jet slow decompression.

    5. After decompression, the internal temperature in the plane could reach minus 30 degrees Farenheit, or minus 50 degrees Celsius, which would interfere with sensitive computer equipment.

    6. The absence of terrorist Internet chatter basically eliminates terrorism from consideration.

    7. The slow decompression theory makes a lot of sense. Out of 239 passengers and 6 crew members, one of them would probably have had a satellite phone, and could have called for help. The fact that no such call was made, points to unconscious passengers due to slow decompression.

    8. The Helios Jet decompression accident resulted in the pilots being incapacitated first, but after that a flight attendant survived and tried to fly the plane but was not competent to do so, and the plane crashed.

    9. On Flight 370 a flight attendant or passenger on the flight may have survived the pilots and tried to fly the plane, but was unable to do so competently, just like in the Helios tragedy. That would explain why the plane changed directions and altitudes in a strange manner.

    Below is info on the Helios tragedy from Wikipedia:

    At 11:49, flight attendant Andreas Prodromou entered the cockpit and sat down in the captain’s seat.[18] Prodromou held a UK Commercial Pilot License,[19] but was not qualified to fly the Boeing 737. Crash investigators concluded that Prodromou’s experience was insufficient for him to gain control of the aircraft under the circumstances.[18]

    10. On Malaysia Flight 370, the flight attendants also had access to separate oxygen sources:

    What are the three sources of oxygen on the 777?

    Two independent oxygen systems are provided, one for the flight crew and one for the passengers. Portable oxygen cylinders are located throughout the airplane for emergency use.

    http://quizlet.com/11368500/boeing-777-fcom-1-airplane-general-flash-cards/

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