Jump to navigation Jump to search

Timeline of events involving Malaysia Airlines ODC in response to the loss of contact with Flight MH370

Saturday, 8 March 2014

02:03:23 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

Malaysia Airlines ODC sent an ACARS message to MH370, direct to the cockpit printer. The ACARS message requested the crew to contact the HCM ACC immediately. The incoming downlink message at 1803:24 UTC showed the message failed to reach the aircraft. The message was retransmitted (automatically) at least seven times. On each occasion, an automated downlink message by ACARS showed ‘failed’.

02:15:00 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

KL ATSC Watch Supervisor queried Malaysia Airlines Operations who informed that MH370 was able to exchange signals with the Flight Explorer.

02:30 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

At 2:30 MYT Malaysia Airlines Operations Manager called the Crisis Director, Fuad Sharuji, by telephone.

Within 30 minutes Mr Sharuji declared the Code Red alert.

02:33:59 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

KL ACC Radar Controller enquired with MAS Operations Despatch Centre (ODC) on communications status on MH370. Personnel was not sure if the message went through successfully. ODC informed that aircraft was still sending movement message indicating it was somewhere in Viet Nam, and that its last position was at coordinates N14.90000 E109 15500 at 071833 UTC [080233 MYT].

02:38:51 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

Malaysia Airlines ODC sent a test message to MH370, requesting an acknowledgement. The message was also re-transmitted at 0239:52 MYT, 0240:42 MYT and 0241:52 MYT. The automated response was 'failed'.

02:39:52 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

Ground-to-air telephony call placed from a number with country code 60 (Malaysia)

02:40:56 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

The GES logs show that the unanswered Ground-to-Air telephony call was cleared by the calling party.

03:00 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

Just before 3am, 30 minutes after being contacted by the Operations Centre, the Crisis Director for Malaysia Airlines, Fuad Sharuji declared a code red emergency.

Within an hour, members of the airline’s Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) had assembled at Kuala Lumpur airport, followed soon after by an emergency response working group, ‘go teams’, and a special assistance team.

03:30:00 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

MAS Operations Centre informed KL ACC that the flight tracker was based on flight projection and not reliable for aircraft positioning.

03:56:13 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

KL ACC queried MAS Operations Centre for any latest information or contact with MH370.

05:20:16 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

KL ACC called Malaysia Airlines ODC and queried MAS for news on MH370.
The Technical Captain said: “Whatever we have here suggest that the aircraft had never leave Lumpur airspace because he has failed to call Ho Chi Minh” and suggested to KL ATSC to trace back the record, voice recording and time of the positive handover to Ho Chi Minh.
KL ACC replied: “I wake up my supervisor and ask him to check again ....".

06:30 MYT

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 departed Kuala Lumpur International Airport at 00:41 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014 and was expected to land in Beijing at 06:30 MYT. The Flight Plan estimated an elapsed flight time of 5 hours and 34 minutes.

07:00:42 MYT Saturday, 8 March 2014

Malaysia Airlines Operations used ACARS to upload flight plan information for MH371, which is the normal return flight from Beijing to Kuala Lumpur.

The intention of this upload may have been to assist MH370 to return to Kuala Lumpur. Unfortunately, the initiative was unsuccessful.

07:13:58 MYT

Ground-to-air telephony call placed from a number with country code 60 (Malaysia)

  1. Q10 AOC Priority Level.
  2. The Perth GES logs indicate that a good link is likely to have existed at this time.
  3. This call would have been routed to the cockpit and should have resulted in a chime and an incoming visual annunciation on the Audio Control Panels, and, if the appropriate SATCOM page was selected, then also on one or more MCDU.
  4. The GES logs show zero duration, indicating that the call went unanswered. Note that there are two methods for the answering of an incoming call: Either by pressing the relevant Line Select Key on an MCDU, or by keying a microphone.

07:15:02 MYT

The GES logs show that the unanswered Ground to Air telephony call was cleared by the calling party.

07:24 MYT

Malaysia Airlines released a brief Media Statement at 07:24 MYT, in English and Mandarin. This was the first official notification to the media that an incident had occurred. The words lost contact were chosen carefully:-

Malaysia Airlines confirms that flight MH370 has lost contact with Subang Air Traffic Control at 2.40am, today (8 March 2014).

The stated time (2:40 am) likely refers to when MAS ODC attempted to contact MH370 by sending a test message which failed.

09:05 MYT

Malaysia Airlines released the second Media Statement at 09:05 MYT.

Additional information included the number of passengers (239 including 2 infants), 13 different nationalities, and 12 crew.

10:30 MYT

Malaysia Airlines' 3rd Media Statement at 10:30 am repeated previous information and addressed speculation that the aircraft had landed at Nanming.

The number of nationalities was increased from 13 to 14 with a list. The Pilot and First Officer were named and a short background was provided:-

The flight was piloted by Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, a Malaysian aged 53. He has a total flying hours of 18,365hours. He joined Malaysia Airlines in 1981. First officer, Fariq Ab.Hamid, a Malaysian, is aged 27. He has a total flying hours of 2,763 hours. He joined Malaysia Airlines in 2007.

14:30 MYT

At 2:30 pm (14:30 MYT) Malaysia Airlines released an incident update which confirmed that the company had no information on the location of the aircraft.

Malaysia Airlines also stated that the company was calling family members of passengers.

16:20 MYT

At 4:20 pm (16:20 MYT) Malaysia Airlines released a 4th Media Statement. The last known position of the aircraft was stated but the time quoted (2:40 am) does not match that position.

The airline addressed the many unvalidated reports out there in the media urging the media and the public to only report official statements from Malaysia Airlines and the Government of Malaysia.

Although 14 nationalities were listed, the airline had apparently confused the country codes of Indonesia (IDN) and India (IND).

16:30 MYT

Malaysia Airlines indicated in their 4th Media Statement at 4:20 pm (16:20 MYT) that the Go Team which had been assembled during the day would be departing Kuala Lumpur at 4:30 pm (16:20 MYT) to assist family members of passengers, in Beijing.

19:20 MYT

At 19:20 MYT Malaysia Airlines released a 5th Media Statement and produced the first Passenger Manifest which included the names of the 12 Crew.

In what may have been the only official statement about the search for MH370, Malaysia Airlines confirmed that an international search commenced that morning, nothing was found, and although the sea mission would continue, the air mission would recommence at daylight.

The was the final Media Statement on Saturday, 8 March 2014.

Malaysia Airlines focus was on the families of passengers and crew. However, although Malaysia Airlines was supportive it was beyond their capability.

The Government of Malaysia formed a High Level Team, but even that was overwhelmed by the negative responses in China. The Government Team, led Hishammuddin Hussein, Minister of Defence and Acting Minister of Transport took over the daily Briefings.

A summary of actions taken by Malaysia Airlines in response to the loss of MH370 is listed below:-

  • attempted to contact next of kin before releasing passenger manifest
  • engaged a disaster recovery management specialist from Atlanta, USA
  • deployed a team of 94 caregivers consisting of well-trained staff and also Tzu Chi Foundation
  • sent a team to Beijing
  • commenced financial assistance
  • set up operations centres in both Kuala Lumpur and Beijing, to care for the families of the crew members and passengers. "MAS has allocated each family a caregiver, who will be on 24hours duty. They have sent more than 100 staff and caregivers to Beijing. The airline gives daily briefings to the families. They provide counselling sessions. And they contact families that have elected not to come to Malaysia between two and three times a day."

For a continuation of Malaysia Airlines news please refer to the Media Statements from Sunday, 9 March 2014 onwards.