The mystery is deepening. What seemed to be a routine flight MH370 led to a crash. What seemed to be a crash with 239 passengers has turned out to be a whodunnit mystery deeper than the Marina trench, much to the anguish and pain of the loved ones waiting for news about the flight. Where in the world is the missing Malaysia Airlines aircraft?
It seemed like any other flight that you regularly take. Say goodbye to loved ones. Fasten your seatbelts. Listen to the mandatory safety messages. Send that one last message. Sleep on board, munch away, listen lazily to music, strike up a conversation with your neighbour, or try and chat up with the airline crew. But it wasn’t like any other flight you regularly take – this flight would not reach its destination.
Now, days after the aircraft went missing, the world is still searching for trails of the missing aircraft. Did it crash in the seas, or land in some forest? Was there a bomb on board, or a terrorist? Has it been hijacked and landed in some deep forest, or is it at the bottom of the sea? Has someone or something plucked it out of the sky?
For relatives of the passengers, every hour of wait is excruciating. Their loved ones have vanished in thin air. It is assumed that all passengers are dead, but what if there is that one passenger, their relative, who is cast away – holding on to some floating debris, or perhaps fighting for survival in some jungle somewhere.
The search and rescue operation is unprecedented. Brains are plotting the path the aircraft took and thus the possible area of search operations. Navies are scanning the seas. Air force jets are combing over 90,000 square kms (36,000 square miles) searching for small debris. Able bodied navies of the world and commercial vessels are all looking out for tell tale signs of the crash site. It’s like finding a needle in a haystack. If the aircraft broke up in mid air, the debris would be spread over a larger area. If the aircraft broke up on impact with water, the debris would be over a smaller area. An oil slick of aviation fuel, a floating airplane part, some debris.. All great in theory except for one small detail – just where is the debris?
While you read this passively from the comfort of your home, its time to join the action. Wear your gear, tie up your laces, grab the backpack, and get ready to be airdropped into the search zone. Never mind if you can’t swim – Poseidon will protect you.
Log on to Tomnod and do join the hunt. Along with thousands of volunteers, you will be searching independent satellite map tiles for signs of the crash, and tagging what you think is airplane wreckage, oil slick, rafts and other floating debris. You are assigned map tiles randomly from unexplored areas of the maps. Start now. A few minutes of your time, and who knows – YOU could spot what the powers of the world can’t.