The Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 that went missing on Saturday has reportedly crashed into the sea, the Vietnamese media reported. The news is said to have been confirmed by the Vietnamese Navy.
The news broke when Tuoi Tre, a leading daily in Vietnam said that the plane, which went off the air traffic control radar crashed into the ocean
According to Navy Admiral Ngo Van Phat, Commander of the Region 5, military radar recorded that the plane crashed into the sea at a location 153 miles South of Phu Quoc Island, Yahoo news has reported citing the local newspaper.
Malaysia's transport minister later denied any crash scene had been identified. However, it has largely been presumed that the flight has crashed, Reuters reported.
Malaysia Airlines said it was "fearing the worst" on Sunday for the plane as the government said it was investigating four passengers who may have held false identity documents, Reuters added.
"We are doing everything in our power to locate the plane.
We are doing everything we can to ensure every possible angle has been addressed," Transport Minister Hishamuddin Hussein told reporters near the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
"We are looking for accurate information from the Malaysian military. They are waiting for information from the Vietnamese side," he said.
The crash, if confirmed, would mark the U.S.-built Boeing 777-200ER airliner's deadliest incident since entering service 19 years ago, Reuters said.
Meanwhile, China has dispatched two maritime rescue ships to help locate the missing plane, reports suggest.
The Flight MH370 that operated on a Boeing 777-200 aircraft departed Kuala Lampur at 12.41 a.m this morning and was bound for Beijing. The aircraft was scheduled to land at Beijing International Airport at 6:30 am local Beijing time.
The Malaysia Airlines was carrying 239 people onboard, including two infants and 12 crew members. The passengers were of 14 different nationalities. 152 plus one infant among them were Chinese, Malaysia Airlines has confirmed in a release. According to various Indian news outlets, 5 among the passengers were Indian.
The flight MH370 lost contact with Subang Air Traffic Control at 2.40 am local time, Saturday. There were speculations that the aircraft landed at Nanming. The authorities have said that they were working to verify the authenticity of the reports.
Following is the list of number of people who were present in the flight in terms of thier nationalities, issued by the airline:
|China/Taiwan||154 including infant|
|USA||3 including infant|
"Our team is currently calling the next-of-kin of passengers and crew," Malaysia Airlines said in the statement."Focus of the airline is to work with the emergency responders and authorities and mobilize its full support."
The last contact the plane had with air traffic controllers was 120 nautical miles off the east coast of the Malaysian town of Kota Bharu, the airline said on Saturday.
The airline also said in a news conference that the pilot of the flight was 53-year-old Malaysian national Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah who has logged a total of 18,365 flying hours and has been working for Malaysian airlines since 1981. First officer, Fariq Ab.Hamid, a Malaysian, is aged 27, the airline said. He has a total flying hours of 2,763 hours. He joined Malaysia Airlines in 2007.
(Edited by Vanilla Sharma)