BANGALORE: A scheduled passenger flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing that disappeared on March 8, 2014, after losing contact with air traffic control less than an hour after takeoff, made international headlines for months together. The disappearance of MH370 flight carrying 12 Malaysian crew members and 227 passengers from 15 nations remains a mystery till date. Captain Samir Kohli's Into Oblivion: Understanding MH370 presents the science and the math behind this tragedy which claimed more than 235 lives.
This book is published under Creative Commons attribution — Share Alike license as the Captain believes that nobody can have a copyright on safety. The author presents a comprehensive scientific evaluation of each and every theory regarding the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
While this book doesn't speculate on how and why the flight was lost, it scientifically interprets whatever little evidence is available at this point of time. An explanation on the scientific basis of the search techniques and methodology has also been provided in this book.
Into Oblivion doesn't sensationalise but merely informs and educates people by sifting facts from fiction. It is a must-read for all those intrigued by the sudden and unexplained disappearance of the aircraft. The author has dedicated the book to all the men and women who work around the clock to keep a commercial aircraft flying. He says that they are always blamed when they are not around to defend themselves.
If you seek a book that explains what happened to the flight, then this is not one for you. The author clarifies that at the time of writing, there was insufficient evidence to arrive at any conclusion regarding what actually happened.
He was inspired to write this book after watching an interview with a victim's partner on CNN. Her statement, “MH370 will be forgotten before too long,” struck a nerve deep within him, he writes.
Recreating the entire sequence of events from March 8, the book tells you how the theories should be interpreted based on the available scientific and historical data.
Captain Kohli states, “The reason for writing this book is to outline the facts, explain them and differentiate between what the facts represent scientifically and what amounts to conjecture.”
Various technical terms that are being frequently used in relation to this incident have also been explained.
An explanation has also been provided on the technology that is being used in the search operations along with some basic scientific data to help the reader understand the complexities involved in this mammoth operation.
The reason and focus of this book lies in truth. No speculation, no allegations and certainly no favourite theory. Every theory out there is just as good as the other in the absence of any proof!
Lastly, if you're looking to read an emotional account of this tragedy, then this book is not for you either as the author has no interviews with any of the victims' family members. This book focuses on pure science and facts and on weighing (not counting) the evidence, exactly the way an accident investigator is expected to.
Kohli further says there are important lessons to be learnt from this tragedy by all of us.
The most important being that none of us can do what all of us can do! Nothing brings out the value of team work as management of a high risk operation like aviation does.
Like in a football match, this starts from the top. The manager, the coach and the captain must lead from the front and shoulder ultimate responsibility for any team to win. In reference to commercial civil aviation, this means the National Government, the National Accident Investigation body and the National Regulator.