Another fragment of missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 may have been found on the shore of La Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean, according to reports.
The latest discovery comes days after a piece of aircraft was retrieved from a sandbank in Mozambique and just days before the two-year anniversary of the jet’s disappearance.
The only confirmed piece of MH370 to be found since the plane went missing also washed up on La Reunion in July 2015.
Local La Reunion news service Clicanoo reported that the latest discovery was made by Johnny Bègue, the man in charge of the foreshore cleaning team that located the confirmed MH370 “flaperon” wing fragment on La Reunion last year.
A spokesperson for the Australian Transport Safety Bureau told The New Daily that it could not confirm reports the latest discovery was another piece of the missing aircraft. The relevant Malaysian and Australian search teams and authorities were yet to authenticate the find.
“We can’t really provide any comment at this point,” the spokesperson said. There was no sign of marine growth or encrustation on the latest piece.
Images of the third piece held found by Mr Begue:
— Antoine Forestier (@a_forestier) March 5, 2016
The ATSB spokesperson said the second possible piece of MH370 debris found in Mozambique last week, which had the words “NO STEP” on it, was expected to be sent to Australia for testing.
The ATSB said the Mozambique object was of interest because it had been found in an area where plotting had indicated debris from MH370 could have drifted.
Tuesday would marks two years since the Malaysia Airlines jetliner disappeared en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, killing 239 people, including six Australians.
It’s believed it crashed somewhere in the southern Indian Ocean, off Western Australia.
Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai last week urged families of the passengers to file claims for damages against Malaysia Airlines by Tuesday.
MH370 ‘deliberately flown’
Adding further intrigue to the mystery surrounding the missing jet, a New Zealand oceanographer who has experience in finding lost aircraft has claimed the doomed flight was being “deliberately flown” when it ended somewhere over the southern-Indian Ocean.
“I think there has been human intervention and it’s been deliberately flown and would have disappeared [completely] without the [forensic satellite analysis],” Rob McCallum told stuff.co.nz.
Mr McCallum also claimed the search teams may be doubling back over previously scoured areas.
“The important point is that this area has been searched before,” he said. “When you say that area’s searched again it means they are really searching, searching again for something they missed.
“In our industry people always ask us can you find this target? What we will do is give you a 100 per cent guarantee that where we’ve searched it’s not there.”
He then criticised the Australian-led search efforts.
“The primary role is to be rigorous in your approach so you can write it off,” Mr McCallum said.
“That’s not happened in this case. They have used a little tiny pen light because they are interested in resolution. We would use a very broad search tool, find the target and then go in with a higher resolution tool.”
The search team used data taken from Inmarsat satellites to determine where the aircraft may have flown and come to rest.
Mr McCallum asked for this data to be made public so independent search teams – of which he said many where willing to help – could make their own efforts to find MH370.
“There’s an incredible amount of goodwill in all quarters to see this thing finished,” he said. “It’s the world’s biggest aviation mystery.”
Mr McCallum works for deep sea and search specialists Williamson & Associates who helped locate Air France flight 447 in 2011.
Williamson & Associates missed out on a contract to help ATSB locate MH370, and citing shortfalls in the ATSB’s efforts, Mr McCallum want’s the “$100 million of data” to be released.
– with AAP