Missing MAS plane bought in 2002, had one incident in 2012

A file photo taken on July 5, 2005 shows a man silhouetted against a Malaysian Airlines plane tail as he looks out through a window at Sydney International Airport. — AFP pic
A file photo taken on July 5, 2005 shows a man silhouetted against a Malaysian Airlines plane tail as he looks out through a window at Sydney International Airport. — AFP pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Mar 8 — The missing Malaysian Airlines (MAS) flight MH370 is a Boeing 777-2H6ER aircraft that was purchased in 2002 and has one previous safety incident on its record.

In an “airfield incursion” at the Shanghai Pudong airport in September 2012, the MAS plane bearing the registration number 9M-MRO collided with a China Eastern Airlines’ Airbus A340-600, registration B-6050, according to the French Office of Investigations and Analysis for the Safety of Civil Aviation (BEA).

“Airfield incursion” is the aviation term used to describe an unauthorized aircraft, vehicle or person on the airfield, which can affect runway safety.

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370. — The Malay Mail Online
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370. — The Malay Mail Online

The Boeing was built on April 2002 and delivered to MAS on May 31, 2002, according to the database in Aviation Week, a global aviation industry service provider, making it nearly 12 years old.

It was also the 404th plane to come of the 777 model production line.

The plane is powered by Rolls-Royce Trent 892 engines, which most commonly powers this particular model.

The last crash involving a 777 with the same engine was on January 17, 2008, when a British Airways Boeing 777-236ER flying from Beijing to London crash-landed at Heathrow airport.

Both of its Trent 800 engines lost power during the aircraft’s final approach, which investigators found were caused by ice released from the fuel system restricting oil flow to the engines.

However, Rolls-Royce has since modified the engines to prevent the problem from recurring.

Malaysia’s worst plane crash involved a Boeing 737-200 — MH653 — that crashed into a swamp in Tanjong Kupang in Johor on December 4, 1977, killing the people onboard.

The flight was reported to have been hijacked while descending towards Subang airport, at around 7.54pm, when the captain informed the control tower of an unidentified hijacker.

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