Saturday, 8 March 2014

Malaysia plane carrying 239 people missing, crashed off Vietnam? Malaysian minister denies crash report!

Chinese Foreign Miniser Wang Yi said in today´s press conference that he is very worried about...

Reports from China's Xinhua news agency say the plane was lost in airspace controlled by Vietnam.

The aircraft did not enter airspace controlled by China and did not make contact with Chinese controllers, Xinhua said.

A report on a Chinese TV network, citing the microblogging website Weibo, said 160 Chinese nationals were on board the flight.


Distressed family members of those on board the flight have also been gathering at Beijing airport.

Chang Ken Fei, a Malaysian waiting at the airport for friends to arrive, said: "I got here at 7:00am. At first I thought the plane was just delayed as normal, so I came a bit later, I've just been waiting and waiting."

"I asked them what was going on but they just tell us, 'we don't know'."

If the plane is found to have crashed, the loss would mark the second fatal accident involving a Boeing 777 in less than a year, after an unblemished safety record since the jet entered service in 1995.

Last year, an Asiana Airlines Boeing 777 crash landed in San Francisco, killing three passengers.

Boeing said it was aware of reports that the Malaysia Airlines plane was missing and was monitoring the situation but had no further comment.

Among previous accidents involving Malaysia Airlines planes, one of the smaller Twin Otter aircraft crashed upon landing in Malaysia's Sabah state on Borneo island last October, killing a co-pilot and a passenger.

And a jet crashed in 1977 in southern Malaysia, killing all 93 passengers and seven crew.

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Malaysia Airlines has still not been able to confirm what happened to the flight. The airline has confirmed that there were 4 Americans — 3 adults and one infant — aboard the flight, which also carried Canadians and Australians, and a majority of Chinese and Malay passengers.
 
Malaysia Airlines lost contact with a commercial aircraft bound from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, China, the airline reported Saturday morning.

Flight MH370, a Boeing 777-200ER that was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew members, was scheduled to land at 6:30 a.m., but lost contact with air traffic control at 2:40 a.m. on March 8. Its whereabouts are unknown.

At 7:24 a.m. local time, the airline posted a message to its Facebook page stating it was working with local search and rescue authorities to find the aircraft, and that it would continue to provide updates. It encouraged the public to contact a number provided for information.

Screen Shot 2014-03-07 at 5.34.03 PMA search for the flight on FlightAware.com showed its status as "result unknown" and included a map that depicted its partially completed route.


Malaysia Airlines VP of operations Fuad Sharuji told CNN's Anderson Cooper that it had tried but "failed to establish any contact" with the plane before he detailed concerns about how much fuel it was carrying.

There were "about seven hours of fuel on board this aircraft and we suspect that by 8:30 this aircraft would have run out of fuel," Faruji said. He added, "At the moment we have no idea where this aircraft is right now."

Kuala Lumpur is the hub for Malaysia Airlines, which services over 60 destinations globally with a heavy presence in Asia, according to its website. The airline told the BBC that it would hold a press conference on the situation later in the day.

According to Reuters, Boeing's 777 had a solid safety record after its 1995 introduction up until last summer's Asiana Airlines crash in San Francisco, Calif.

We will continue to update this post with more information as it arises.

-  mashable.com

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