New clues reveal the demise of MH370. Since the crash of MH370 in the Indian Ocean a considerable amount of physical evidence has been gathered. 43 pieces of floating debris have been found and 41 delivered to the Malaysian authorities for investigation. Two items are awaiting repatriation to Malaysia and are still in the BEA offices in Madagascar. Official reports are still awaited for 10 items. 19 items of floating debris probably originating from MH370 have been found washed ashore in Madagascar, which is situated in the Indian Ocean at the latitudes where the South Equatorial Current interacts with the island.
Another item of floating debris known as the “Tataly” debris item has been discovered in a fisherman’s back yard which was found washed ashore on the Antsiraka Peninsula South Beach in Madagascar in March 2017 after the tropical storm Fernando had passed by. The debris item had barnacles on it when it was found. 4 items of MH370 debris have been found on the same beach including an item known as the “Broken O” debris item. The location was predicted by the University of Western Australia (UWA) oceanographic model. The “Broken O” debris item is possibly from the tail of MH370 and part of the vertical stabiliser near the rudder hinges such as here
The “Tataly” debris item was originally thought to be likely the remnant of the left main landing gear trunnion door, but in a more recent analysis has been shown to be more likely a remnant of a flap or slat such as here
Both the debris items are almost certain to be from MH370 and are similar to other items of floating debris found in the Western Indian Ocean and subsequently shown to be from a Boeing 777 or more specifically from the Boeing 777-200ER aircraft with the registration 9M-MRO used for the flight number MH370. There is a common construction, consistent use of lightning strike protection and the items were found in the same location as predicted by the drift analysis.
The debris item was torn from its fixings and has suffered considerable damage. The possibility that there is an indent typical of the base plate of an attachment or drive rod indicates that the debris item is likely part of a movable panel. The slicing damage to the debris item penetrates right through the item and is the result of a significant force. Whatever the cause of the slicing damage, the fact that the damage was from the interior side to the exterior side of the debris item leads to the conclusion that the item was likely in close proximity to the engines and the damage was possibly caused by fan blades slicing through the flap or slat.
The level of damage with fractures on all sides and the extreme force of the penetration right through the debris item lead to the conclusion that the end of the flight was in a high speed dive designed to ensure the aircraft broke up into as many pieces as possible. The crash of MH370 was anything but a soft landing on the ocean. Expert analysis showed that the flaps were not partially extended as would be the case for a sea ditching.
The combination of high speed impact and possible extension of the landing gear show a clear intent to hide the evidence of the crash. The recovered MH370 floating debris speaks to how the plane crashed, and the oceanographic drift analysis speaks to where. Neither can tell us who was flying the aircraft or why. It is hoped that the debris item will undergo a professional examination and analysis leading to an identification and provenance of the item.
A full report by Blaine Gibson and Richard Godfrey can be downloaded at the following link (35 pages, 100 MB): here
21st December 2022 – A major update to the report answering the many questions we have received, with the use of high resolution photos, can be downloaded at the following link (14 pages, 113 MB): here
7th December 2023 – A second major update to the report answering the many questions we have received about the lightning strike protection, with the help of an aviation expert familiar with the Boeing 777, can be downloaded at the following link (17 pages, 36 MB): here