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Interview: No research shows Boeing 777 can make emergency landing at sea or wilderness

English.news.cn   2014-03-24 21:08:59

KUALA LUMPUR, March 24 (Xinhua) -- "Boeing 777 is an aircraft with comparatively large size, whose landing requires at least a 1. 5 km-long runway with certain hardness," an experienced Malaysian pilot told Xinhua in an exclusive interview.

Up to now, there has been no research showing that Boeing 777 could make an emergency landing at sea or wilderness, the pilot said on condition of anonymity.

According to him, the aircraft is equipped with many communication systems to contact with the ground control, and only by shutting down all of these systems can the aircraft lose its radar contact.

"The earth is round, and radar signals can not cover low altitude, so theoretically, it is possible for a plane to fly low to avoid radar," the pilot said.

During the flight mission, he said, the pilot works on flight controls, while the co-pilot is in charge of the radio call. Actually one pilot is sufficient to fly an civil aircraft due to its auto pilot system. "When emergency occurs, for instance, one of the pilots has a heart attack when flying, the other one can still successfully reach the destination by the auto pilot system.

However, both the pilot and co-pilot must stick to the principle of not trusting each other during commercial flights. They have to complete the flying task by cross check to guarantee a safe journey.

In other words, he added, any of the pilots must get the confirmed information from the other pilot before they move to the next step together. This principle aims to avoid accidents caused by negligence or mistake in operation. "Actually all operations in the cockpit, such as changing the course or switching off the communication system, can be done by one pilot."

Referring to the speculation on the Internet that the pilot of the missing MH370 might have flown the aircraft in the shadow of another Boeing 777 aircraft to avoid the radar, he pilot said it could be true in theory but requires very high airmanship in operation.

"Due to the air speed difference in high altitude and low altitude, aircraft flies faster when in high altitude, therefore, the aircraft, which shadows the other, can hardly remain at the same speed in a long journey," he said.

"Moreover, the transponder of the missing jet has been switched off deliberately. Therefore, the pilot cannot locate the aircraft which he is shadowing under. Locating that aircraft precisely is not possible only by sighting. So it is very likely to happen that two aircraft would fly one after the other, and this makes the aircraft hardly avoid the radar scan."

Judging from his flying experience and all the information that has been gathered so far, the pilot said that the possibility of an engine failure or accident could be very low. It is more likely to be a deliberate act.

"There are several emergency locator transmitters (ELT) on the aircraft. Once a failure or accident happens, apart from the pilots, all the crew members can also report the aircraft's location to the ground by switching on the ELT system," he said.

Editor: chengyang
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