Jumat, 24 Juli 2015

Wing debris same as missing Malaysia plane

Aircraft debris found off the coast of Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean appears to belong to the same type of plane as Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which vanished more than a year ago, a U.S. official told the Associated Press on Wednesday.
Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai told reporters at the United Nations that he sent a team to identify the wreckage.
Malaysia is heading up the investigation with the help of Boeing, the National Transportation Safety Board, French authorities and the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, Australian Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss said in a statement.
"In the event that the wreckage is identified as being from MH370 ... it would be consistent with other analysis and modelling that the resting place of the aircraft is in the southern Indian Ocean," he said in the statement.
French aviation experts will examine an aircraft wing tip — possibly a flap — and other debris to determine whether it came from the Boeing 777-200ER, which disappeared after taking off from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on March 8, 2014, bound for Beijing with 239 people aboard. No trace of the plane has been found despite months of aerial and sea searches over thousands of square miles of the southern Indian Ocean.
Truss, who has overseen the search in the ocean 1,000 miles west of Perth, said Malaysia is examining the debris with help from Boeing and crash investigators from France, the United States and Australia.
"The debris is being examined by experts to determine its origin," Truss said. "In the event that the wreckage is identified as being from MH 370 on La Reunion Island, it would be consistent with other analysis and modeling that the resting place of the aircraft is in the southern Indian Ocean."
"Any new evidence will be used to further inform and refine ongoing search efforts," Truss added.
Investigators have a "high degree of confidence" that a photo of the debris shows a wing component unique to the Boeing 777, said the official, who was not identified.
The official says investigators — including a Boeing air safety investigator — have identified the component as a "flaperon" from the trailing edge of a 777 wing, AP reported.
The wing section is about 9 feet long and has an identification number that will show what type of aircraft it is, the local newspaper, Journale de l'ile de la Reunion reports, quoting the transport authority in charge of the investigation.
Adjutant Christian Retournat, a member of the French Air Force in Reunion, confirmed the discovery of the debris, CNN reported.
"It is way too soon to say whether or not it is MH370. We just found the debris this morning in the coast of Saint Andre," Retournat said Wednesday, CNN reports.

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