The missing Malaysian flight 370 may be the work of pilot suicide, which is considered a taboo subject that is often not explored when it comes to suspicious plane crashes. This is one possibility that the officials must consider during their investigation, according to CBS News on March 17.
A pilot suicide is highly improbable, but not ruled out as of yet. This is one subject that officials have been reluctant to conclude in the past when the possibility has surfaced. Suicide by a pilot taking an entire plane full of passengers with them is unthinkable, but it is one way to hide the act of suicide.
Crashing the plane in deep water with a chance of the plane never being found would guard against the suicide being tagged on the pilot. Many times life insurance policies won’t pay loved ones for death by suicide, especially in the early years of a policy.
If one of the pilots wanted to commit suicide and have their insurance policy money be paid to his family, a plane accident would hide the act of killing yourself. CBS News reports that even when the evidence has been compelling in the past that a pilot took a plane down as part of their suicide, officials were very reluctant to explore this possibility.
This was seen with the crash of Egypt Air Flight 990 in 1999 where all 217 passengers and crew on board died. The pilot turned off the auto pilot and pointed the plane down into the water when it crashed of the coast of the Massachusetts island of Nantucket. The inquiry into this crash showed that the pilot was alone on the flight deck when did this.
On his way down he repeated the phrase 11 times, “I rely on God.” He said this over and over again until the plane hit the water. The word “suicide” was never used, just that the pilot’s actions had caused the flight to crash. They went on to say the reason for his action “was not determined.”
A SilkAir flight 185 in 1997 crashed into a river and killed all 104 passengers and crew on board under suspicious circumstances. An investigation by the U.S. found that the pilot’s actions in bringing down the plane were deliberate. This was in disagreement to the Indonesian investigation which found the cause of that crash inconclusive.
In November a flight that crashed killing 33 people points to the pilot intentionally bringing the plane down. The Mozambican Airline flight was headed for Angola when the plane crashed. The investigation is still on-going in this crash, but the preliminary investigation points to the pilot deliberately bringing down the plane.
While it is not unheard of, pilot suicide is considered rare. Did the pilot or co-pilot of the Malaysian Airline flight 370 fly 45,000 feet to depressurize the cabin rendering the passengers and crew knocked out and then take the plane down? Highly unlikely, but a theory being looked at today.