KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 1 ― The discovery of a wing portion from the still-missing Flight MH370 indicates the plane was likely piloted into the ocean, air crash expert Larry Vance has claimed.
Vance said the MH370 flaperon ― a small part of the wing discovered off Madagascar ― showed that it was extended at the time of landing, with such extension requiring activation by an individual.
“Somebody was flying the airplane into the water,” he was quoted saying last Sunday on Channel Nine's 60 Minutes programme.
In the same report by Australian Associated Press, Vance was quoted saying that a slow and controlled landing could be the reason for the lack of floating debris from MH370.
“Everybody should then have concluded, in my opinion, that this was a human engineered event, there’s no other explanation,” he also said, citing the discovery of the flaperon a year ago.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau crash investigator Peter Foley said that the MH370 flight's final location could fall outside the current search zone if someone was manning the aircraft until the end.
“There is a possibility there was someone in control at the end and we’re actively looking for evidence to support that,” he was quoted saying.
Recently, suggestions that Flight MH370 pilot Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah may have deliberately steered the plane to the Southern Indian Ocean in a “murder suicide” resurfaced after New York magazine quoted a confidential Federal Bureau of Intelligence (FBI) report noting the flight simulation path on his personal flight simulator being of interest.
But Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said the government is not aware of claims that Zaharie had run a simulation of the southern Indian Ocean air route one week before the jet disappeared, adding that investigation is ongoing.
The Malaysian police had investigated Zaharie's flight simulator before in 2014 but cleared him of any terror links.
The Malaysia Airlines flight had 239 people on board when it mysteriously disappeared on March 8, 2014. Investigators have been searching the southern section of the Indian Ocean, believing the jumbo jet ended up there.