Millions of people around the world have been following the investigation of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370. The plane, which disappeared early March 8th as it was traveling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, had 239 people onboard. While more international support pours in every day, the public is left to continue speculating as to what, exactly, happened to Flight 370.
Below is a list of facts compiled from various news sources– including Huffington Post, NBC News, ABC News, and CNN– that, when considered either separately or all together, make the disappearance of the airliner even more eerie.
One. The plane disappeared less than a half hour after taking off.
Two. Investigators believe someone with experience switched off the plane’s navigation systems.
Three. Data logs from a flight simulator belonging to the captain were deleted in early February and are being further investigated by the FBI.
Four. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has confirmed that there are not yet any theories connected to the investigation (Huffington Post).
Five. The disappearance is “among the longest in aviation history” (Huffington Post).
Six. The plane was last detected by Malaysian military radar systems, but was hundreds of miles off course.
Seven. The plane made an abrupt U-turn that had been programmed into the Flight Management System 12 minutes before the person in the cockpit signed off. Other turns also took the plane further up the Indian Ocean.
Eight. The search area for the airliner covers about 3 million square miles.
Nine. Authorities believe that the disappearance is a result of deliberate action taken from someone onboard the airliner.
Ten. “We know there’s a chance that we may never find out what happened.” -Phaedra Hise, pilot (Huffington Post)
Eleven. Some family members of passengers have accused Malaysian officials of withholding information from them.
Twelve. Two minutes after sign off with air traffic controllers, the plane stopped communicating signals regarding altitude, speed, heading.
Thirteen. Flight data and cockpit voice recorders have batteries that last for only 30 days; the investigation to find the plane is now on its 13th day.
Fourteen. If it turns out that the plane continued to travel four more hours after losing communications, the search area will grow larger than the United States, geographically.
Fifteen. It has been speculated that two passengers were traveling with false passports.
Sixteen. The plane’s cabin could have been depressurized, causing passengers to go into a “hypoxia sleep” from which they would never wake up, according to aviation analyst Jim Tilmon (CNN).
Seventeen. Mary Schiavo, Former Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Transportation, says there is an “eerie silence” due to lack of evidence and forthcoming information (CNN).
Eighteen. It is possible for someone as experienced as a pilot to plan out radar locations and determine where blind spots in radar detection may be located.
Nineteen. Six minutes after losing communications with the plane, the Thai military detected a signal from an unknown aircraft heading in the opposite direction of Flight 370’s original course.
Twenty. Analysts say that the plane could have shadowed another airliner in order to avoid radar detection.
Some experts are comparing the airliner’s sudden disappearance to the mystery of Amelia Earhart, whose plane disappeared over the Pacific Ocean in 1937. Neither remnants of the aircraft nor Earhart were ever found. Let’s hope that with the he help of the FBI and many international forces, the Flight 370 mystery does not end the same way.
This post was originally published on Tumblr on March 20, 2014.