His suggestion that it’s possible for a plane of that size to float for a while before sinking was proved by US Airways Flight 1549 that landed on the Hudson River in 2009, and remained above water for long enough for all 155 passengers and crew aboard to be evacuated.
But Martin Dolan, chief commissioner of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), the agency leading the search, said that the ATSB was working on the assumption that the wing part was linked to MH370. Family members in China say they want to be taken to the island of Reunion.
Malaysia, which asked for assistance from France in its search for more debris on Reunion Island, also appealed to the governments of Mauritius, about 140 miles northeast of Reunion, and Madagascar, to help widen the search.
Police carry a piece of debris from an unidentified aircraft, now believed to be of flight MH370, in the coastal area of Saint-Andre de la Reunion, in the east of the French Indian Ocean island of La Reunion, on July 29, 2015.
“Malaysia Airlines would like to sincerely convey our deepest sorrow to the families and friends of the passengers onboard Flight MH370 on the news that the flaperon found on Reunion Island on 29 July was indeed from Flight MH370″.