A Naval Flight Officer assigned to Patrol Squadron (VP) 16,
monitors his workstation on a P-8A Poseidon during search
and rescue operations for the missing aircraft. REUTERS/US
Another 300 objects have been spotted in new satellite
images from the Flight 370 search zone released late last
night, just hours after the son of the pilot spoke out in
defence of his father following speculation he had seized
control of the jet on a suicide mission.
Authorities said the items had been detected by Thailand's
space agency and were about 2700km southwest of Perth and
about 200km away from the area where a French satellite had
spotted 122 floating objects early this week.
The new objects ranged from 2m to 15m in size, officials
said, but it was unclear whether they belong to the missing
Malaysia Airlines aircraft.
The space agency's executive director, Anond Snidvongs, said:
"We cannot - dare not - confirm they are debris from the
The latest information came after Ahmad Seth Zaharie, 26,
said he did not believe his father, long-time pilot Captain
Zaharie Ahmad Shah, had deliberately taken the plane down.
"I've read everything online. But I've ignored all the
speculation. We may not be as close, as he travels so much,
but I understand him," he told the New Straits Times.
On Tuesday, the Herald carried an interview with a friend of
Captain Zaharie who said he believed the pilot was in "no
state of mind" to be flying an aircraft because of personal
issues he was going through.
Ahmad Seth Zaharie - the youngest of the captain's three
children - said his family had not yet accepted that the
plane had crashed, killing all 239 people on board.
"Now, we are just waiting for the right confirmation. I will
believe it when I see the proof in front of my eyes," he
Meanwhile, crews looking for Flight MH370 were forced out of
the search area yesterday by bad weather just as the
satellite images showing hundreds of scattered objects gave
fresh hope that the hunt for the aircraft may be over.
Heavy rain, strong winds and low clouds meant the conditions
were too dangerous for aircraft and ships to be in the area.
The choppy conditions - which also affected search missions
earlier this week - reduced visibility significantly.
A total of 11 planes and five ships had initially planned to
scour the area.
Earlier, the Royal NZ Air Force team involved in the
searching were said to be encouraged by the reports of new
objects being found.
Air Commodore Mike Yardley told Radio NZ yesterday: "If any
of the spirits were flagging, this will be a great boost to
that and renew everyone's interest."
New crew on mission 'very keen' to play their part
The New Zealand Orion aircraft being used to find debris of
Malaysia Airlines flight 370 is world-class, and the new crew
on the mission are eager to start their work, according to
their commanding officer.
Wing Commander Rob Shearer, who leads the Royal New Zealand
Air Force (RNZAF) Airborne Surveillance and Reconnaissance
Force, Squadron Five, said the 12 crew leaving tomorrow were
keen to join the search.
Wing Commander Shearer told a media briefing at Whenuapai Air
Base yesterday that the crew, who left at 2pm, will start
their search missions today in the Orion P-3K2 equipped with
world-class technology. A radar, camera, and viewing decks on
board the aircraft have been recently upgraded and are state
of the art.
"This is a great opportunity to go out there and prove what
we do," Mr Shearer said.
"We are very, very keen to help."