The New Straits Times reported today that missing flight MH370 dropped to 5,000 feet after turning back from Kuala Lumpur-Beijing route.
Yahoo News reported:
As the search for the missing flight MH370 enters its 10th day with few clues as to its whereabouts, the New Straits Times said today the Boeing 777-200ER dropped 5,000 feet (1,500m) to evade commercial radar detection.
In an exclusive story, the government-backed paper said investigators analysing MH370’s flight data revealed that the 200-tonne, fully laden twinjet descended 1,500m or even lower to evade commercial (secondary) radar coverage after it turned back from its flight path en route to Beijing.
The Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200ER (9M-MRO) disappeared on March 8 with 239 people on board. Malaysian authorities said on Saturday the plane was deliberately diverted and its on-board transmission devices switched off to avoid detection.
Its last contact was at 8.11am north of the Strait of Malacca.
Investigators poring over MH370’s flight data had said the plane had flown low and used “terrain masking” as it flew over the Bay of Bengal and headed north towards land, the NST reported.
Officials, who formed the technical team, were looking into the possibility that whoever was piloting the jet at that time had taken advantage of the busy airways over the Bay of Bengal and stuck to a commercial route to avoid raising the suspicion of those manning primary (military) radars, the paper said.
“The person who had control over the aircraft has a solid knowledge of avionics and navigation and left a clean track. It passed low over Kelantan, that was true,” the NST quoted an anonymous official as saying.