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MH370 final investigation report tabled in KL

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MH370 final investigation report tabled in KL | The Thaiger
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PHOTO: Channel News Asia

The disappearance of the entire 73 metre-long plane, passengers and crew remains one of the world’s biggest aviation mysteries.

A report has just been tabled concerning the fate of the 239 passengers travelling on flight MH 370 which vanished in 2014.

Malaysian authorities say they can’t determine the cause of the disappearance of the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 77, although the report does rule out several possibilities. In the release of a the widely anticipated safety investigation report investigators acknowledge a lack of any clear evidence on the plane’s ultimate fate

As of the printing of the report no major wreckage of the plane’s structure has been discovered.

The flight disappeared in on March 8, 2014 with its cargo of 239 people from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, in a routine scheduled flight.

Lead investigator Kok Soo Chon says MH370 turned back towards Malaysia under manual control, but it could not be determined whether the plane was being flown by the pilot or if there had been any unlawful interference. He was speaking at the release of the report in KL. He went on to rule out other factors that had been questioned in the loss of the flight – catastrophic aircraft malfunction, the pilot’s mental condition or remote control of the plane’s operating systems.

Kok Soo Chon says the report was published with all the evidence they had at hand whilst not ruling out the possibility of providing closure to the families who had lost loved ones in the future. He said the investigation would re-open as soon as any concrete evidence came to hand.

A search for the plane, carried out by Malaysia, China, and Australia, was called off in January 2017 after failing to find any trace of the plane within a 710,000 square kilometre patch of the Indian Ocean. A private company reached an agreement with the Malaysian government to extend the search, but that too was stopped in May.

With the technology in place at the time of MH370’s final flight, “the team is unable to determine the real cause for the disappearance,” said Chon.

MH370 final investigation report tabled in KL | News by The Thaiger

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Malaysia

Technical issues force Singapore aircraft to land on Malaysian highway – VIDEO

Maya Taylor

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Technical issues force Singapore aircraft to land on Malaysian highway – VIDEO | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Twitter

A single-engine prop plane from Singapore has been forced to make an emergency landing on a Malaysian highway due to technical difficulties. A report in Coconuts says the aircraft touched down on the hard shoulder of a highway in Johor, as cars sped past. The 2 pilots on board are believed to be in stable condition.

Chester Voo, CEO of Malaysia’s aviation authority, says an investigation has been launched to determine what went wrong with the plane, which has now been removed.

“Search and rescue teams have completed all required tasks. The investigation will be conducted by the Air Accident Investigation Bureau under the Ministry of Transport, Malaysia.”

It’s understood the plane left Seletar Airport in Singapore and was flying to Melaka when the pilots contacted Air Traffic Control at Johor, requesting permission to land at Senai International Airport, due to technical problems. However, Voo says the aircraft did not make it to the airport before it had to land on the highway.

Meanwhile, Thomas Ong from Premier Aero Singapore, who provide services at Seletar Airport, says his company provided immigration assistance to one of the pilots prior to departure, but doesn’t know what happened to cause the emergency landing.

“We only assisted Dr Yang in immigration formalities with the Seletar Airport Authority for his arrival and departure.”

SOURCE: Coconuts

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Singapore – Hong Kong travel bubble delayed due to Covid rise in HK

Maya Taylor

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Singapore – Hong Kong travel bubble delayed due to Covid rise in HK | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Ruslan Bardash on Unsplash

Singapore and Hong Kong have agreed to delay their travel bubble plans as Hong Kong experiences a jump in Covid-19 cases. Although case numbers in both cities are nowhere near as serious as what’s currently being seen in places like Europe and the US, officials are erring on the side of caution and postponing the plan by at least 2 weeks.

The travel pact would have allowed people to travel between both cities without having to endure mandatory quarantine, but authorities on both sides had agreed it would be postponed if either location reported more than 5 new local cases in a rolling 7 day average. The Bangkok Post reports that travel between both cities remains possible, but quarantine is still a requirement in both places.

Mungo Paterson, a British national who lives in Hong Kong and had booked a ticket to Singapore for December 7, says the reinstatement of the quarantine requirement is the biggest problem.

“That is the main deterrent, I have no interest in sitting in a hotel room for 2 weeks – it’s not healthy. I was excited when they announced it, I thought ‘here we go’. I’m now holding off confirming until Dec 2. I think there’s a 50-50 chance the flight will happen.”

Singapore Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung says the rise in cases in Hong Kong shows that any attempted travel arrangement will not be plain sailing.

“This is a sober reminder that the Covid-19 virus is still with us, and even as we fight to regain our normal lives, the journey will be full of ups and downs.”

The strict border controls seen in Asia appear to have helped countries here suppress the virus better than elsewhere in the world, but the controls have come at a significant cost, crippling tourism and the aviation sector. Rico Merkert from the University of Sydney’s business school says that, without international traffic, Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines will continue to struggle, even when the travel bubble between their 2 hubs does begin.

“Even if the Hong Kong-Singapore corridor opens, the boost to the 2 aviation hubs will be limited. Singapore Airlines and Cathay will continue to struggle because they can’t funnel onto the route those travellers who would normally arrive from Europe and the US. Without that feeder traffic, those bubbles will at best be limited to the local population. International travel is going to remain a tricky affair.”

October traffic for both carriers has plummeted compared to the same period last year, with Cathay carrying just 38,541 passengers, down 98.6% on 2019 figures. Singapore Airlines has experienced a similar slump, with October numbers down 98.2% on last year’s, at 35,500.

Brendan Sobie from Sobie Aviation says at this stage, the implementation of a travel bubble is mostly symbolic, adding that the aviation sector will take years to fully recover.

“Bubbles provide a little bit of incremental additional international traffic in the interim period until the pandemic ends. A full recovery in air traffic will still take a few years, even with a vaccine, though bubbles will help get the process moving.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Drugs

Half a tonne of high grade compressed marijuana seized in NE Thailand

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Half a tonne of high grade compressed marijuana seized in NE Thailand | The Thaiger

Thai border police have seized half a tonne of “high grade marijuana” Nakhon Phanom province, north east Thailand, saying a border with Laos and the Mekong River. Border police announced the seizure of 480 kilograms of marijuana during a routine roadside search.

Police announced that a car was intercepted on a road near Ban Khok Sawang. The driver, 25 year old Likit Boonprasit, was detained and later arrested by border police. They found 12 fertiliser sacks containing a total of 480 1 kilogram “bricks” of of compressed marijuana. He told police the marijuana had been smuggled across the Mekong in long-tail boats from Laos.

The man said he would be paid 30,000 baht to deliver the marijuana to Bangkok. He told police that the delivery instructions were to be sent to him as he headed towards Bangkok. More than 3 tonnes of high grade marijuana out of Laos have been seized in Nakhon Phanom over the past month.

At the end of last month border patrol police seized 556,000 methamphetamine pills and 138 kilograms of compressed marijuana in That Phanom district, on a road near the Mekong River.

In that case police found 3 fertiliser sacks containing 556,000 methamphetamine pills and 4 other sacks with 138 kilograms of Marijuana in an abandoned vehicle.

Police claim the pills were being transported from Myanmar, via Last, as an alternative route into Thailand. They were then smuggled by long boat across the Mekong river.

Road routes and traditional border crossing have been closed as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic.

SOURCE: Chiang Rai Times

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