Possible New Evidence In The Mystery Of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370

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The latest news on the 10-year-old mystery of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 comes out of Australia, this week, where a 77-year-old fisherman claims he likely snagged part of the Boeing 777 wing in his nets, but his reports were ignored by authorities. Kit Olver said that six months after the flight disappeared on March 8, 2014, his trawler’s net snagged a large piece of debris that he said was clearly part of the wing of a large aircraft.

“It was the bloody great wing of a big jet airliner,” he told the Sydney Morning Herald, adding, “I’ve questioned myself; I wish to Christ I’d never seen the thing.”

His companion on the trawler, now-69-year-old George Currie, backed up the story, telling the paper, “It stretched out the net and ripped it. It was too big to get up on the deck. As soon as I saw it, I knew what it was. It was obviously a wing, or a big part of it, from a commercial plane.”

In his interview with the newspaper, Olver countered any natural skepticism by offering to provide the exact coordinates of where he found the debris to authorities. He said the location is roughly 55 kilometers off the coast of Southern Australia, adjacent to the coastal town of Robe, which is about halfway between Melbourne and Adelaide.

Mark Phelps
Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

49 COMMENTS

  1. This statement
    “but his reports were ignored by authorities” begs the question how he reported it and to whom.

    Anyway, given the rather precise coordinates seems like some authority should take a look.

  2. There was a ham radiio operator who said he thinks he can interpolate using interference caused by MH370

    You would think this and the fisherman’s data would make finding it a bit easier.

  3. Hmmm, my first impression is that in order to end up where this guy claims, the aircraft would have had to fly over a significant part of Australia…

      • ??? Fuel for one. Aussie radar for another. Complete non-starter as it is at least 4,000km from the nearesr possible position!

    • This is an example of how one’s first instinct is usually the wrong one. After MH370 lost contact off the northern tip of Malaysia, it could have turned south. If it had enough fuel, it could have traveled far enough to put wreckage within drifting range of southern Australia in 6 months. On the other hand, this was 2014. Most people had cellphones back then. “hey mate, here’s a really big airplane wing in our gill net. Should we snap a pic of it?” ………”nah bloke, no one cares. eff off back to work”. Right.

      • I am not familiar with prior cases of significant aircraft structures being able to float around in the ocean for months on end.

  4. Obviously Bovine Ordure, as it is thousands of km.s from even the nearest possible location. Typical Aussie been out in the sun too long.

  5. I too caught a huge fish.. no picture, no video, you’ll have to “trust me bro” on this one. It was this (gesticulates wildly) big and tore our net too !

  6. “Nah I won’t bother taking a picture, why spend the effort?”
    No one thought about taking a picture of the giant airplane wing, despite knowing that the whole world is dying to solve the mystery of the disappearing plane that crashed in the same ocean 6 months before?

  7. What nobody talks about is the 440 LBS. of Lithium Ion batteries made by Motorola in the cargo bin. They were made in Malaysia and being shipped to China for computers. These batteries will burn if the temperature exceeds 350 degrees. Lithium batteries give off toxic fumes that would knock a cow off it’s feet. You should go to youtube and look up a laptop battery fire. The flames from your laptop will be burning 2-3 feet.
    Two years after ML370 I believe it was (ICAO) made shippment of them on passenger planes illegal world wide and when shipped as cargo they are limited as to a percentage of full charge. I recall something like only a 20% charge allowed during shipping.
    Those are my studies.

    • Green Dot Aviation released an excellent analysis on YouTube a few days ago that mentioned some evidence that I think is hard to square with an accident.
      One of the most compelling is when the transponder went off. To turn it off on the 777 you need to rotate the switch through the ALt switch position. On the radar transcripts they found that for a split second the transponder was only reporting altitude before the transponder turned off, indicating that someone had rotated the switch. To me it’s very difficult to square this with an electrical fault.

  8. “It was the bloody great wing of a big jet airliner,” he told the Sydney Morning Herald, adding, “I’ve questioned myself; I wish to Christ I’d never seen the thing.”

    His companion on the trawler, now-69-year-old George Currie, backed up the story, telling the paper, “It stretched out the net and ripped it. It was too big to get up on the deck. As soon as I saw it, I knew what it was. It was obviously a wing, or a big part of it, from a commercial plane.”

    This reminds me of sea monster tales of hundreds of years ago.

    Anyone have an idea what a Boeing 777 wing weighs? How much weight can those fishing nets lift, especially without capsizing the boat?

    I am in aviation, but I have spent enough time around fishermen and mariners to be mildly skeptical when hearing big claims without photographic evidence. Besides, don’t all vessels have GPS these days to provide a precise lat/long? If a mariner pulled up significant wreckage, wouldn’t they document it by photos and a precise position?

    Lemme guess, they were on a row boat in the middle of the ocean… 🙄

    • Perhaps the fisherman mistook “the bloody great wing of a big jet airliner,” for Moby Dick? Too much alcohol can have that effect.

  9. I know how we can increase tourism in our little struggling town of Robe. Let’s say we saw a sea dragon in our fishing nets. Nah, but how about a wing intimated to be from MH370? Those searchers and TV crews will need some place from which to base their operations!

  10. This smacks of a 15 minutes of fame event, however if they have coordinates and the water is not especially deep, one days worth of side scan sonar ops will prove or disprove the report. Seems worth it to me.

  11. The mystery is why “they” are not telling us what happened. If the USAF is not tracking everything that moves over the surface of the planet, then we have wasted a lot of money. Not to mention the Chinese, Russians, Indian’s, etc….

  12. There is no way MH370 could be south of Australia. If it had passed over Australia it would have been caught on radar. As I noted in my book, Science About How Tornadoes And Vortexes Form And How They Are Causing Planes To Crash (Including MH370) which is available from Barnes & Noble and Amazon, MH370 can be found where all the debris was found floating after the crash at 44.40S & 91.57E as noted in my book.
    Ronald B. Hardwig, Professional Engineer

  13. Yea , how about a bloody picture from your Iphone of this Gienormas piece of commercial wing ripping your net? Or maybe your Kodak 110 was out of film and the rum bottle was empty.

  14. I believe the initial analysis of the Captain performing an intentional (disappearing) act of hijacking his own aircraft and intentionally for reasons not fully (but partly) known is the truth. He let the autopilot fly until fuel exhaustion. The big pieces are no doubt near where they found the little ones. As mentioned above, Bob Ballard thought everyone was mistaken looking for Titanic in bigger pieces instead he searched for a debris field on the ocean floor. Compared to Titanic a 777 is much smaller and probably broke up on impact even smaller as did the Air France 447 off Brazil a few years before.

  15. It would seem that someone in government or the aviation world should head out to the location described by the fisherman and determine the status of what he discovered. A large airliner mysteriously disappears and this find is being ridiculed by some here?

  16. Blaming the Captain covers up a dirty little secret in airport security. Flight crews need to go through a thorough TSA check. On the other hand, cleanup and catering crews have full and unfettered access to cabin after cabin from stem to stern without any security oversight whatsoever during the course of their work day. There’s nothing to prevent them from opening the hatch to the electronics bay climb down and have a look see.
    My theory, that given the utility crews can come and go as they please, that armed terrorists mingled in among them and later stowed away in the electronics compartment and had full access and control of the lot. At the appointed time electronics were shutdown and up from that compartment come armed and ready to do the unthinkable. Much like 9/11 but instead of 19 just one or two fanatics with sufficient knowledge and timing and one have been trained to the extent the 9/11 crew were.

  17. …and to think that the Hollywood Studios spent all that time and money in nearly impossible negotiations with the Writers Guild over the summer! All they really had to do was subscribe to AVweb and enlist some of these “commenters”!

  18. I thought the ill-fated voyage of OceanGate’s “Titan” was en route to the Titanic to retrieve the FDR and CVR. ??

  19. As far as “why didn’t they snap a photo with their iPhones?”, keep in mind we are not talking about office workers in a city. They’re on a fishing boat, well outside of cell coverage, working a hard, dirty, WET job. They’re not going to keep a thousand-dollar bit of fragile electronics pocketed in their sou’westers. After leaving port, the cell phones undoubtedly get turned off and tucked into a drawer somewhere. Struggling with overloaded winches and tearing nets, I don’t think the first thing they’ll think of is to drop everything, run to their cabins, and wait for the cell phone to boot up.

    THAT said…I doubt they’d be able to pull a wing off the bottom of the ocean.

  20. I understand that maintenance telemetry was being transmitted to satellites. It’s almost criminal that GPS position information wasn’t included in that data stream.

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