CANBERRA — A piece of airplane debris featuring scorch marks, which is thought to be from missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, has arrived in Australia for examination, local media reported today.
Amateur investigator Blaine Gibson, who has found 13 of the 27 pieces of debris from the missing Boeing 777 jet, arrived in Canberra today with the piece of debris which he believes could be the most significant find in the search for the missing airliner.
Gibson told the Seven Network the scorch marks could represent a fire in the cargo bay, but also admitted it could be the result of the huge force of impact.
“The top layer of paint has been singed, scorched black,” Gibson told Seven.
“(It’s significant) because it appears to be from the interior of the plane but not the main cabin, perhaps the cargo hold, perhaps the avionics bay.”
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) is expected to examine the piece of debris in Canberra, and should it determine the piece is from the missing plane, it could prove to be pivotal in the investigation as it is the first piece to indicate the possibility of a fire on board.
However, despite the fact that Gibson brought the debris to Canberra, the ATSB is seeking clarification from colleagues in Malaysia before they examine the piece.
The spokesperson said Malaysian authorities are leading the investigation and are “responsible for the analysis” of all potential pieces of the plane.
“Note that the Malaysian Government is responsible for the investigation and therefore is responsible for the analysis of all possible MH370 debris.”
MH370 was a scheduled passenger flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing which disappeared on March 8, 2014, with 239 passengers and crew on board.