Could Tracking Mechanisms on Missing Jet Have Been Shut Down Intentionally?

By: CBS News
By: CBS News

There is some new information about the disappearance of that Malaysia Airlines jet. CBS News has confirmed that two critical communications systems used to track the aircraft appeared to have been shut down deliberately. That, sources say, could mean the plane's disappearance was no accident.

CBS News has confirmed that two communications systems on board Malaysia Airlines Fight 370 were shut down sequentially, causing the plane to drop off of air traffic tracking systems. That raises the possibility that last week's disappearance of the Boeing 777 with 239 people aboard was a deliberate act.

US officials say the jet continued to "ping" satellites for four hours after the plane disappeared from radar. Those pings did not contain data that might tell investigators in which direction the plane was headed. But they suggest the jet did not crash immediately. However, the aircraft could also emit those pings if it were sitting on the ground with its engines running.

Military radar picked up unidentified "blips" heading west toward the Indian Ocean. US radar experts studied the images, and say they are consistent with a Boeing 777. But it's not much to go on.

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