Like a scene from the old TV series, “Twilight Zone” or a mystery novel, the continuing, head-spinning saga of how a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200ER vanished March 8,, 2014 into thin area has captivated the media, travelers and anybody who reads or listens to the news.
Many “experts” have given their take on it, lots of journalists put personal spins on it, everybody seems to be going around in circles with theories from the obvious catastrophic experience (ie:crash) to terrorism, hijacking, alien invasions, errant comets or missiles and more. And while the world ponders all those possibilities news sources such as AOL are reporting that the solution comes down to three pieces of evidence:
- The mysterious malfunction or disengagement of the transponder which according to AOL, says “One clue is that the plane's transponder - a signal system that identifies the plane to radar - was shut off about an hour into the flight.” “IIn order to do that, someone in the cockpit would have to turn a knob with multiple selections to the off position while pressing down at the same time, said John Goglia, a former member of the National Transportation Safety Board. That's something a pilot would know how to do, but it could also be learned by someone who researched the plane on the Internet, he said.”
- ACARS not many civilians know what they are, but according to AOL and other on line news sources this is another clue that is part of the Boeing 777's Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) was shut off. The system has two parts that are used to send short messages via a satellite or VHF radio to the airline's home base. The theory goes that the information part of the system was shut down, but not the transmission part. This is also something a pilot would know how to do, but that could also be discovered through research.
- Guided flight theory is another probability. This would be reflected by the transponder being turned off and civilian radar lost track of the plane, Malaysian military radar was able to continue to track the plane as it turned west.
In case you forgot, the Malaysia Airline flight took off from Kuala Lumpur at 12.21 a.m. (11.21 a.m. ET Friday) there were no distress calls or communications with Air Traffic Control. However there is a recording that sounds like the pilot saying “Good night”.
It’s not easy to sleep well on this information until we know what really happened and if we ever will.
Our hearts go out to all the friends and relatives of the 239 people who were or are on board the missing flight.