Link between Wartburg and missing plane

2016-03-16 06:00
Liam Lotter and what could be a clue to solving the mystery of the missing Malaysian flight MH 370.

Liam Lotter and what could be a clue to solving the mystery of the missing Malaysian flight MH 370.

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WHILE Wartburg and a missing Malaysian plane are thousands kilometres apart they have, over the past week, been closely linked in television and print media all over the world.

This is as a result of a holiday spent by 18-year-old Liam Lotter, and his family of Wartburg, in Mozambique­ in December.

A one-metre or so piece of grey metal debris was picked up by Liam on a beach, and despite requests from mother, Candace, to leave it there, Liam took it home to Wartburg where it sat with holiday equipment until very recently.

For two years the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines flight MH 370 with 239 passengers and crew has been one of the greatest mysteries in aviation history. It disappeared on 8 March, 2014 while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

Millions of rands and hours have been spent trying to locate the plane, but to no avail. There are many theories including one that the plane and passengers are being held somewhere, but the search continues.

A couple of weeks ago a piece of wreckage was found on the beach in Mozambique, allegedly from the missing aircraft.

The announcement of the find triggered the memory of "their" piece and Mrs Lotter contacted the aviation authorities in South Africa and Australia. On Monday, two officials from the South African Civil Aviation Authority's Accident and Incident Investigation division visited the Lotter home and collected the piece for further analysis in order to determine if it came from MH370.

It will first be flown to Malaysia and then to Australia for detailed investigation. The piece Liam found may make it very easy to confirm or deny if it came from MH370 as it has what appears to be a serial number on the back.

Australia aviation authorities, who have been at the forefront in supplying finance, manpower, air and sea power for the extensive searches, and who will undertake the detailed processing of the debris, have expressed concerns that pieces of wreckage from the missing MH370 might have been picked up and kept as souvenirs.

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