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Trigana Air flight IL267 crashed into mountain side

The Trigana Air Service plane that crashed into a mountainside on Sunday, August 16th has been reached by search and rescue teams.  

Reports from the crash site state that the plane has been completely destroyed by the impact and there are no survivors.

Trigana Air Service Flight IL267, a French built ATR 42 turboprop aircraft with 54 passengers (44 adults, 5 children and 5 crew) departed Jayapura at 2.21pm local time for the 50 minute flight and was due to arrive into Oskibi at 3.16 pm but contact was lost just before arrival. 

It is understood from local reports the plane was on approach in bad weather to Oksibil which is located in the central mountainous region of the country.

The air crash investigator’s primary goal is to find the black box recorder to determine how this tragic accident occured. 

World’s Safest Airlines

See video on flying in Indonesia Papua’s highlands.

The plane is 28 years old and is registered PK-YRN and was under the command of Captain Hasanuddin.

Since 1991 when it was formed, Trigana Air Service, which is banned from the EU, has been involved in 10 crashes, four of which involved fatalities.

Its worst accident till yesterday was in July 1997 when a twin-engine Fokker F-27 on a domestic flight crashed at Bandung after take-off when one of the engines developed problems. Twenty eight of the 50 aboard were killed.

The airline has been heavily involved in transportation around the oil industry.

It operates flights to 16 destinations in Indonesia usinf a fleet of 10 ATR turbo prop planes and six Boeing 737s.

Indonesia is considered by ICAO  (International Cival Aviation Orgnisation) to have the poorest oversigth of aviation safety of any of the world’s major countries.  Whilst there are other countries with worse safety ratings, the popularity of Indonesia as a tourist and business hub results in very high number of passengers and therefore it is of great concern.

In some cases Indonesia is only 20 per cent compliant with world standards.

Ocean floor debris not from MH370

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau has dismissed a story from the Dailymail.co.uk regarding debris found on the seabed as being “highly likely” from MH370 as incorrect.

The article which has been picked up by major wire services claims that images of debris are Category 3 being the most likely to be plane debris. In fact it is the reverse with Category 3 being the least likely and Category 1 the most likely.

In a statement for Airlineratings.com the ATSB said: “The article describes ‘Category 3’ sonar finds as being the most likely to be aircraft debris. In fact, they are the least likely to be aircraft debris. Classification 3 is assigned to sonar contacts that are of some interest as they stand out from their surroundings but have low probability of being significant to the search. The underwater search so far has identified more than 400 seabed features that have been classified as category 3.”

The pictures touted by the online website as “new” were in fact taken months ago and posted to the ATSB’s website to show some of the random items being found by the search teams.

In all probability the objects are shipping containers that have been swept overboard in a storm.

Stunning pictures from on high

We have seen many stunning pictures taken from aircraft over the year but these are amongst the best of the best.

Taken by Christiaan (JPC) van Heijst a pilot with a major freight airline they are truly spectacular.

Christiaan founded www.Amazing-Aviation.com in 2013 with colleague Daan Krans and the two world-renowned photographers bring a new dimension to portraying aviation with striking imagery, unrivaled in quality, accuracy and almost always with a flair for the artistic.

In this photo essay, we feature the work of Christiaan who has worked for 12 years as an airline pilot and professional photographer. He starting his flying career on the Fokker 50 Turboprop, flying under contract in Africa and Afghanistan for almost two and a half years.

Then he moved on to Transavia.com where he flew the Boeing 737NG for almost five years before making his most rewarding step in early 2011 to Europe’s leading All-Cargo-Airline; Cargolux International Airlines.

Flying the true Queen of the Skies, the Boeing 747-400 and the latest 747-8 Freighter as a Senior First Officer on a long haul global network Christiaan always has his camera within reach, ready to capture the magic above the clouds and the world from a unique pilot’s perspective.

The captions below each photo are remarks by Christiaan.

To order these photos and to see the entire magnificent collection click here;

Air New Zealand turns to the ‘Men in Black’ to promote safety

Air New Zealand has teamed up with the All Blacks and an all-star line-up of international rugby greats to tackle the airline’s latest on board safety video, Men in Black Safety Defenders.

Inspired by the popular film, Men in Black, it features All Blacks’ Captain Richie McCaw and Dan Carter as well as Coach Steve Hansen, team mates Kieran Read, Keven Mealamu, Sam Whitelock and Israel Dagg who gets to test his vocals alongside Kiwi musician Stan Walker.

WATCH VIDEO BELOW

American actor Rip Torn reprises his role as Chief of the Men in Black with Wallabies great David Campese, former England Captain Martin Johnson and former Argentinean Captain Agustin Pichot making cameo appearances.

“The creative concept and the parallels drawn between the All Blacks and the Men in Black are really clever. It’s been exciting to help Air New Zealand bring the Men in Black universe to life in this unique way,” says Emmanuelle Borde, Executive Vice President, Sony Pictures Entertainment.

Air New Zealand Head of Global Brand Development Jodi Williams says the airline is crazy about rugby making the All Blacks the perfect partner for its latest safety offering.

“We recently extended our sponsorship of the All Blacks and New Zealand Rugby through until 2020 and thought what better way to celebrate than with a safety video.

“We’ve worked with the All Blacks on previous safety videos and thought it would be fun this time around to have them step into the shoes of the other highly trained Men in Black. The result is not only entertaining but makes people sit up and take notice of the key safety messages.”

See Surfing Safety Video

See The most epic safety safety video ever made

See The Beuaty of Safety

All Blacks Captain Richie McCaw says the players had a great time making the video.

“We had a lot of laughs on set and were blown away by Israel’s hidden singing talent. If rugby doesn’t work out for him he clearly has a promising career as a back-up singer.”

Israel Dagg says growing up he was a huge fan of the Men in Black films.

“I grew up listening to the iconic Men in Black movie soundtrack song. Hopefully I’ve done it some justice.”

Australian Wallabies great David Campese admitted his appearance in Men in Black Safety Defenders is likely to come at a cost.

“I’m expecting to get a right ribbing from my mates for appearing in a video promoting the All Blacks, Australia’s key opponents. They’ll never let me live it down.”

Former Argentina Captain Agustin Pichot and Martin Johnson, former England Captain shared his sentiment.

“The All Blacks are staunch rivals of the Pumas making it especially fun to play the role of their nemesis in Air New Zealand’s new safety video,” says Mr Pichot.

“I’m a big fan of Air New Zealand so was excited to get the call up to appear in the airline’s latest inflight video. I’m sure English rugby fans will have a few words to say about my appearance alongside the All Blacks too,” says Mr Johnson.

New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Officer Steve Tew says it’s a big year for the All Blacks and with plenty of travel on the cards the team was keen to be involved in delivering the airline’s safety briefing to fellow customers.

“Air New Zealand’s been a long-time supporter of the All Blacks and New Zealand Rugby and has played a crucial role in connecting the team to fans across the globe through inventive and colourful marketing efforts such as Men in Black Safety Defenders.”

Men in Black Safety Defenders will be progressively rolled out across Air New Zealand’s fleet from today.

Medical emergency aloft – what you need to know!

It’s mid-afternoon, July 13, 2005, and this reporter is catnapping 35,000 feet above Canada’s unforgiving Northwest Territories, en route from Atlanta to Tokyo Narita International.

Aboard Delta Air Lines Flight 55, a sleek 777-200ER, a quiet drama is about to play out, one that will intimately illuminate how airlines, crew members, ground-bound physicians and, yes, even some passengers can work in concert to pull people through a serious medical emergency.

A flight attendant has been hit in the head by a heavy serving tray in the rear galley. She’s showing signs of moderate concussion, a condition that demands close scrutiny.

The call goes out on the cabin public address system for a doctor. No one responds. Another summons, this time for a nurse. No one answers. Finally, the voice of the chief flight attendant pleads for anyone with medical experience to help. I pause, then push the flight attendant call button on my seat console. It’s been three decades since I was a U.S. Army combat medic. I just hope I remember enough to help

On board the Triple-Seven is a medical kit. I grab the blood pressure cuff and stethoscope and try to take a reading, the noise of the air rushing over the fuselage all but masking the telltale initial “tap-tap” systolic sound, as well as the fading “thump-thump” that signals the diastolic reading. It takes two tries to get a clear blood pressure, and it’s lower than it should be.

The chief flight attendant calls the captain, who initiates a call to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Stat-MD operation in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania, where emergency physicians are on call 24/7. He puts me on the line with a specially-trained doctor. I relay the vital signs, my overall impression of the patient’s condition.

It’s time to make a decision. If Flight 55 is going to divert, the nearest airport close to appropriate medical help is Anchorage. And if we’re going to make ANC we need to start descending shortly. The diversion will cost Delta upwards of $100,000. The captain, in whose hands the final decision lies, asks the doc what he thinks. The three of us – passenger, physician and pilot – converse one more time. The patient’s pupils are equal and responsive to pulses from my penlight. Her blood pressure is coming back up. There’s no blood in the ears. Best get her to the crew rest area in the upper “attic” of the Triple-Seven and have me monitor her for the rest of the flight.

No diversion, not this time. The rest of the flight is blessedly uneventful.

A Decidedly Delicate Balancing Act

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) airlines worldwide flew some 3.3-billion passengers in 2014, the last full year for which statistics are available. On the basis of data gathered between January 1, 2008 and October 31, 2010 authors of the May 2013 article Outcomes of Emergencies on Commercial Airline Flights in the prestigious publication The New England Journal of Medicine estimate “44,000 in-flight medical emergencies occur worldwide each year. Medical emergencies during commercial airline travel, although rare on a per-passenger basis, occur daily.”

Let’s sharpen that per passenger statistic a bit. U.S.-based MedAire’s air-to-ground MedLink service, based out of the Emergency Department of Banner Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona in the US “receives an average of 37.5 calls for medical advice from aircraft in flight per 1 million passengers carried by the [airlines] that use our service,” says Dr. Paulo Alves, MedAire’s global medical director for Aviation Health. Some 70 airlines worldwide employ the MedLink.

“Taking care of passengers is something unique to the transportation industry and, in particular, to air transportation,” says Alves. In his paper The Challenges of Medical Events in Flight, he goes on to say, “Once a flight is airborne, there is no possible access to any established health care system.” That creates a dilemma, how to strike a good balance “between the immediate risk and cost of a diversion, vs. the implied risk – or even liability—when deciding to continue a flight with an ill or injured passenger.”

MedLink stats reflect one aircraft diversion per one million passengers flown. A diversion means a flight lands at an airport other than its intended destination.

Air-to-ground doctor-to-aircraft systems, endorsed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), “can help in significantly reducing unnecessary diversions,” says Alves.

But what airlines want to prevent, at all costs, is an in-flight passenger death. While reported statistics are scarce, Dr. Alves says, “it’s estimated that one IFD (in-flight death) occurs for every 7.6 million passengers traveling. In addition to the human toll IFDs wreak, he says they can ignite “litigation and bad publicity for the airline.”

What Ails You

Most in-flight medical emergencies, or IFMEs, says The New England Journal of Medicine’s (NEJM) study, have to do with lightheadedness, fainting, respiratory symptoms or gastrointestinal symptoms. Just about 30 percent of those situations got better while the flight was still in the air, so much better that emergency medical personnel weren’t needed upon landing. When things did not get better, and the pilot asked for EMS help upon touchdown, just over 37 percent of those passengers were taken to a hospital emergency room.

“In addition to cardiac arrest,” says the NEJM report, “medical problems that were associated with the highest rates of hospital admission were stroke-like symptoms (23.5%), obstetrical or gynecologic symptoms (23.4%) and cardiac symptoms (21%).”

Drilling a bit deeper into data, the report found obstetrical symptoms rarely cause medical emergencies, “a finding that supports existing recommendations that air travel is safe up to the 36th week of gestation [pregnancy].” The majority of obstetrical or gynecologic symptoms—just under 61 percent of them—“occurred in pregnant women at less than 24 weeks.” As for the popular belief that pregnancy begets bunches of flight diversions, the study tallied just “three cases involving pregnant women in labor beyond 24 weeks which resulted in diversion.”

Tool Kits to Combat What Ails You

AEDs, automatic external defibrillators, those wondrous machines that can shock a heart back to beating, are mandated for passenger aircraft by US Federal Aviation Administration regulations. So is a well, and specifically, stocked Emergency medical kit, or EMK. A number of other worldwide regulatory bodies recommend or require the same.

No mere first aid kit, EMKs are mini-pharmacies. They’re fitted with oral drugs such as Nitroglycerine tablets for heart pain. There’s injectable Epinephrine, to counter life-threatening anaphylactic shock, which can be triggered by severe allergies to things as simple (and potentially deadly) as peanuts.

How to Avoid an IMFE in the First Place

The best way to handle a medical emergency, in the air or the ground, is to avoid it altogether. Dr. T.J. Doyle is medical director of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center’s Stat-MD program, which serves some 17 airlines throughout the globe. He says the most important role passengers can play in protecting their health aloft is to make sure they understand their own medical issues, particularly chronic conditions.

Included in the chronic category is COPD, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, where supplemental oxygen may be necessary. “It’s important to remember that even if you don’t need oxygen on the ground, the cabin altitude is [usually] the equivalent of being on a six- to eight-thousand-foot mountain,” says Dr. Doyle. “So, even if you don’t need it at sea level there may be a possibility you may require oxygen at altitude.”

If you have a chronic pulmonary problem, Doyle suggests checking with your physician before flying, as well as the airline. That’s because “The solution now on the commercial airline side is portable oxygen concentrators.” Problem is “Most US commercial airlines either no longer provide, or give you the opportunity to purchase, on-board oxygen. Some of the Canadian airlines do.”

There are a number oxygen concentrators approved by various governmental regulatory agencies such as FAA and EASA, the European Aviation Safety Agency.

So, how about those cylindrical oxygen bottles with the masks attached that you may have seen stowed on board? Why not use those? “The onboard [portable] oxygen is technically not for passenger use,” says Stat-MD’s medical director. “It’s really for the flight attendants in the case of a decompression emergency so they can walk around the cabin…[Passengers] shouldn’t have an expectation it’s available for them.”

Another IFE-avoidance tip is a bit of a no brainier: “Make sure that if you take medications that you don’t put them in checked baggage,” says Dr. Doyle. “Have them with you in your carry-on.”

More than a few flyers forget. “We get calls from people on transoceanic flights,” he says. “A classic [example] is they have forgotten their Insulin is in their checked baggage and that their blood pressure is going to be out of control.”

Is There a Doctor On Board?

MedAire doesn’t track the percentage of time on-board professional medical help is at hand, but Dr. Alves estimates it ranges from 60 to 80 percent – physicians, nurses, emergency medical technicians and other first responders. As sort of a force-multiplier measure, MedAire runs training programs “designed to give cabin crew [flight attendants] the knowledge and skill to recognize and manage in-flight medical emergencies.”

Still, Alves says the fact remains “Many airlines rely on the kindness of stranger by paging for a medical volunteer.” Problem is, “A medical professional doesn’t board a flight expecting to go to work—he [or she] is a passenger first,” a passenger who “may not have the skills necessary” to handle the situation they face. AirlineRatings.com is aware of one doctor who has saved Qantas the Australian airliners three diversions to Hawaii over the Pacific.

Hovering over the situation, providing presumed cover for those strangers, is the Good Samaritan angel. In general, Good Samaritan laws offer legal protection to people who give reasonable assistance to those injured, ill, or in peril. But, as with everything involving the law, there are nooks and nuances you need to know about.

Alves says, “Good Samaritan regulations that may cover those assisting during a medical situation could be negated if any form of compensation is offered. Someone who is compensated is not generally regarded as a volunteer.”

Back to Delta Flight 55 for a second. After I tended to the flight attendant and got her settled in the crew rest area, the captain upgraded me to business class. I took him up on it, every few minutes checking on the condition of “my patient.” But—and here’s the irony of it—the moment I settled into that BusinessElite seat I may have stripped myself of legal cover, the Good Samaritan angel fluttering away outside the window.

Even if I had declined the upgrade, Good Samaritan might not have applied. That’s because a week after I returned home from Tokyo I found a delivery driver at the front door with a goody basket of crackers and confections and a thank you note from Delta.

Be compassionate, but play it safe. Assuming you’re qualified, volunteer to render aid. Remember, the physician, pilot, qualified passenger partnership really can save lives. But don’t expect anything aside from satisfaction in return. Decline anything that even hints of a gift.

The greatest gift in all is human life. Ground-bound physicians such as Paulo Alves and T.J. Doyle understand that. They also understand, says Doyle, while an in-flight medical emergency “may be a once-in-a-career [event] for the cabin crew, the pilot, and…the on-board volunteer,” it’s virtually a daily occurrence at companies such as MedAire and Stat-MD. That’s why having an experienced, aviation-savvy ground-bound ER doc at the crew’s beck and call can be critical, even when medically-trained personnel are on board.

“We do this all the time,” says Doyle. “We understand how [IFMEs] work…how they usually play out. It’s important that the flight crew trusts us.”

Whether to divert or not remains the captain’s call. Doyle says pilots sometimes disagree with the ground doctor’s recommendations.

But physicians thousands of miles away still have considerable sway as they help crew and on-board caregivers navigate the IFME storm, working to “take some of the fear and uncertainty out of the situation and, hopefully,” says Dr. Doyle, “help everyone onboard get through it.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tiger starts overseas expansion with Bali flights

Tigerair Australia has announced its long-awaited expansion onto international routes with its first services to Denpasar, along with a deal that will enable Virgin Australia customers to burn Velocity frequent flyer points on Tiger’s new Bali services.

Tigerair will take over Virgin’s services to Denpasar from Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth from March next year, leaving Virgin’s planes to continue flying to Bali from Sydney and Brisbane.

However, Tigerair’s A320 jets don’t have the six-hour range to fly on the longest of its new routes (Melbourne-Denpasar), so they will be operated by Virgin’s 737-800s, repainted in Tiger colours but flown by Virgin pilots.

Tiger chief executive Rob Sharp says it’s an interim arrangement that will precede a broader expansion onto international routes, most likely in the 2016-17 financial year.

The routes Tiger is actively looking at include trans-Tasman services from Australia to New Zealand leisure destinations such as Queenstown and Rotorua.

In the meantime, as part of the latest revamp, Virgin Australia will stop flying altogether to Phuket, Thailand, which it has served with five-a-week 737s from Perth after earlier axing services from Melbourne and Brisbane with its widebody 777-300ERs.

Tigerair and its parent have a strict policy of total separation between the two brands, ruling out co-operative arrangements like the codeshares which Qantas undertakes with its subsidiary Jetstar.

However, as part of today’s announcement, Tiger has relaxed the ban on interactivity with its parent by allowing Virgin customers to spend Velocity frequent flyer points to buy tickets on the new Tiger service to Bali – but not on Tiger flights to other destinations.

And there’s no relaxation of the policy that Tiger flights can’t be used to accrue Velocity points.

The new Bali services – daily from Melbourne, eight times a week from Perth and five days a week from Adelaide – will be operated by three Virgin 737-800 jets with a tight all-economy layout of 180 seats, compared with 176 seats on existing Virgin jets, with premium economy-style seating up front and in the overwing exit rows offering increased seat pitch of 86 to 99 centimetres (34 to 39 inches) per seat row.

The premium seats will cost $40 on top of the one-way economy fare from Melbourne, $32 from Adelaide and $30 from Perth. Tiger is offering in an introductory discount economy seat sale for $89 one-way (from Perth), $99 (from Adelaide) and $129 (from Melbourne) between March and June next year.

With the planes freed up by the changes in services to Bali and axing of Phuket, Virgin Australia will increase frequencies on trans-Tasman routes (Melbourne and Sydney to Christchurch and Brisbane to Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin) and services from Brisbane to Honiara, Solomon Islands, Nadi, Fiji, and Apia, Western Samoa.

The new services to Bali will also benefit from having Virgin’s already installed in-flight wifi, which can be used on passengers’ own devices – either free or paid, depending on the package, the airline says.

Tigerair is on track to record its first full-year profit in Australia in the current financial year, with Virgin reporting Friday that its low-cost subsidiary cut its losses from $51 million to $9 million in the first six months of this year alone.

CEO Rob Sharp says the airline is benefiting from the synergies it can use as part of the Virgin group, the introduction of airport bag drop services, roaming airport staff using iPads to speed up check-in and a massive increase in reliability, up from 75 per cent of flights arriving on-time in 2014 to 87.5 per cent in June this year, the latest month for which government figures are available.

MH370: Debris confirmed from flight

MH370

Malaysia’s Prime Minister M Najib Razak has confirmed that the flaperon that washed up on Reunion Island last week is from MH 370.

“Today, 515 days since the plane disappeared, it is with a very heavy heart that I must tell you that an international team of experts has conclusively confirmed that the aircraft debris found on Reunion Island is indeed from MH370,” Mr Najib said.

At the press conference in KL he “committed to do everything to find out what happened to MH370” and added “it is my hope that this confirmation, however tragic and painful, will at least bring certainty to the families and loved ones.”

Mr Najib said the “the burden and uncertainty faced by the families” in the 515 days since the aircraft disappeared had been “unspeakable”. “We now have physical evidence that flight MH370 tragically ended in the southern Indian Ocean,” he added.

The confirmation came after the Malaysian PM spoke with Malaysia Airlines’ experts in Toulouse France.

An international team of investigators In France is due to conduct a full forensic examination of the Boeing 777 flaperon later today. The team is made up of experts from Malaysia, France, Australia and US and may be able to shed light on what might have happened to MH370.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 disappeared on March 8 last year on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 passengers and crew aboard.

MH370: Timeline

MH370: Only human input

Yesterday in Australia Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss confirmed that Australia, at the invitation of the French judiciary, has sent an expert from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau to Toulouse, France, to take part in the examination of the flaperon.

The ATSB is leading the underwater search for MH370 1,800km west of Perth.

Mr Truss also revealed that CSIRO drift modelling, commissioned by the ATSB, confirms that material from the current search area would have been carried to Reunion Island, as well as other locations.

A drift modelling working group was set up, comprising a number of organisations including: the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Asia-Pacific Applied Science Associates (APASA), the US Coastguard, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) and Global Environmental Modelling Systems (GEMS) to ensure that best practice modelling was put in place for the subsequent search.

A number of search and rescue datum buoys were also deployed which were used to measure actual surface drift in the search area and to validate the drift models being used. Similarly, real-time wind and wave data from the search area was used to continuously update the drift model. .

“For this reason, thorough and methodical search efforts will continue to be focused on the defined underwater search area, covering 120,000 square kilometres, in the southern Indian Ocean,” said Mr Truss.

The CSRIO has also conducted reverse drift modelling and while its states that it is “very imprecise when used for long time periods” it says that the results of reverse modelling are also consistent with the defined search area west of Perth.

Yesterday the Australian Federal government’s Joint Agency Coordination Centre encouraged people to report any item of interest on beaches they find to the relevant local authorities.

Malaysian Prime Minsiter’s full statement; 

PRIME MINISTER’S OFFICE
MALAYSIA
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATIVE CENTRE
62502 PUTRAJAYA

6 August 2015
PRIME MINISTER NAJIB RAZAK STATEMENT ON MH370
On 8 March 2014, flight MH370 from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing disappeared. The days, weeks
and months that followed have been a period of torment for the families of those on board.

The plane’s disappearance was without precedent. At every stage, we followed the tiny amount
of evidence that existed. But, despite the efforts of 26 nations and the largest search in aviation
history, from the South China Sea to the Indian Ocean, the plane could not be located.

Neither could investigations by the world’s leading aviation experts answer why MH370 veered
off course and went dark. While the plane’s disappearance remained a mystery, we have
shared the anguish of those who could find no comfort.

Last week, on 29th July, we were informed by the French authorities that part of an aircraft wing
had been found on Reunion, the French island in the Indian Ocean.

Today, 515 days since the plane disappeared, it is with a heavy heart that I must tell you that an
international team of experts have conclusively confirmed that the aircraft debris found on
Reunion Island is indeed from MH370.

We now have physical evidence that, as I announced on 24th March last year, flight MH370
tragically ended in the southern Indian Ocean.

This is a remote, inhospitable and dangerous area, and on behalf of Malaysia I would like to
thank the many nations, organisations and individuals who have participated in the search.
The burden and uncertainty faced by the families during this time has been unspeakable. It is
my hope that this confirmation, however tragic and painful, will at least bring certainty to the
families and loved ones of the 239 people onboard MH370. They have our deepest sympathy
and prayers.

I would like to assure all those affected by this tragedy that the government of Malaysia is
committed to do everything within our means to find out the truth of what happened. MH370’s
disappearance marked us as a nation. We mourn with you, as a nation.

And I promise you this: Malaysia will always remember and honour those who were lost
onboard MH370.

ENDS

Bali ash cloud returns. Flights disrupted.

Virgin Australia and Jetstar have both cancelled flight to Bali as unfavourable winds blow the ash cloud from Mount Raung over the holiday island.

Virgin Australia has cancelled 10 flights to and from Bali while Jetstar cancelled four flights Tuesday evening and has delayed flights today (Wednesday Aug. 5)

Jetstar advises passengers not to travel to the airport but monitor the website.

See Miracle Escape here.

Both airlines are trying to advise passengers by SMS.

Virgin Australia said that it will provide another update at 7pm Eastern Australian Time.

Virgin Australia will provide another update on tomorrow’s operations to the media around 7pm this evening.

“We continue to monitor the situation closely. The safety of our guests and crew is our highest priority and we will keep customers updated as new information becomes available,” a Virgin Australia spokesperson said.

Virgin Australia is advising its passengers currently in Bali not to travel to Denpasar Airport without a confirmed rebooked flight.

“Guests whose flights have been cancelled as a result of the volcanic activity will be able to change their booking to another date or alternative destination before August 30 without fee or receive a full travel credit by contacting our Guest Contact Centre on 13 67 89 (from Australia), 00 1803 061 2002 or +61 7 3295 2296 from other international locations,” the airline said.

Bali’s Denpasar Airport remains open as at 10am Australian Eastern Time but this may change.

The airport handles 300 flights and 40,000 passengers a day.

Last month Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority warned Australian airlines to stay away from the ash cloud because of the danger to passengers, crew and possible damage to the plane.

Last year Jetstar had a A$20 million repair bill for one plane after a night flight from Perth to Jakarta entered an ash cloud that was not forecast.

A special Airbus volcanic ash report says ash clouds should be avoided “by all means due to the extreme hazard”.

 

 

Timeline for MH370

MH370 Boeing 777 search Malaysia
The Boeing 777 that is missing

MH370 Timeline

March 8,2014 – B777 missing

March 17 – Search moves to Southern Indian Ocean

March 28 – Search moves to 1800km west of Perth

April 4 – Search moves off Exmouth

April 7 – “Black box” pings detected

April 16 – Underwater search starts

May 29 – Bluefin 21 search abandoned

June 20 – Search moves south to “March 28” area

Late June – Sea floor mapping starts

Oct 3 – Towed side-scan sonar search to start

Jan 14, 2015: Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) called for expressions of interest to prepare for recovery operations for MH370.

April 7: Search area doubled to 120,000 square kilometres.

July 29: Boeing 777 flaperon found on Reunion Island.

August 5: 59,000sq/km searched

Australia to London in four hours!

Australia to London in just over 4 hours or New York to London in just over 1 hour.

That is the possibility from Airbus which has just registered a patent for a supersonic jet capable of traveling at Mach 4.5.

Airbus, whose heritage companies built the Concorde which ceased operations in 2003, proposes an aircraft that use three different types of engine that will propel it at twice the speed of Concorde.

Superb Concorde anniversary video

Youtube video on Airbus supersonic patent

According to the patent the “ultra-rapid air vehicle and related method of aerial locomotion,” is a three stage engine process.

First the aircraft would take off using turbojets and after take-off these would retracted.

Then – and this is not for faint hearted – a single rocket would propel the aircraft vertically to 100,000ft.

Once the aircraft reaches that altitude, which is more thna twice as high as where conventional commercial aircraft cruise, two ramjets would be deployed and speed the aircraft to March 4.5 or 3000mph or 5,372km/hr.

According to Sputnicknews.com Airbus has beaten the sonic boom because when the aircraft is travelling vertically to its cruise altitude the boom will travel horizontally across the atmosphere, not downward towards the ground.

Concorde’s sonic boom was one its major problems as well as the cost which kept it out of the reach of normal travellers.

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