Bangkok: A newly found debris suspected to be from the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 that went missing in March 2014 may be the first piece of evidence supporting the theory that there was a fire on board the plane, said media reports.
Five pieces of debris were handed over to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) in Canberra on Monday by American amateur sleuth Blaine Gibson, Efe news reported.
Gibson, who has previously brought 13 of the 27 suspected and confirmed pieces of wreckage from the flight to MH370 investigators, said two of the pieces were burned and carried singe marks on them.
“If those are found to be from Malaysia 370 and if it is discovered that the fire took place before the crash, then this is a real game changer that could help identify what was the cause of the plane’s demise,” he said.
The debris was found on the coast of island nation Madagascar, located off the southeast coast of Africa, and where the majority of the suspected debris pieces has already been discovered.
The pieces resemble some of the paneling used in Boeing 777 planes and have the honeycomb pattern of Boeing’s composite materials, and the burn marks could support the theory that the plane was downed by a fire.
Flight MH370 with 239 persons on board went missing on March 8, 2014, en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, with available data indicating that the plane flew into the waters of the southern Indian Ocean.
More than 1,10,000 sq km of the seafloor have been searched so far for clues to or debris of the missing jetliner.
First Published | 15 September 2016 6:00 PM