12/04/2024
Aviation Accidents

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 – 17 July 2014

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was a scheduled passenger flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. It was shot down on July 17, 2014 while flying over eastern Ukraine. On this flight, which carried a total of 283 passengers and 15 crew, everyone on board were killed. Contact with the Boeing 777-200ER (aircraft) was lost when it was about 50 km (31 mi) from the Ukraine-Russia border. The wreckage of the plane fell near the village of Hrabove in Ukraine’s Donetsk Oblast, 40 km (25 mi) from the border. The plane crashed in an area where Ukrainian troops and pro-Russian forces were in conflict.

Russian news agency Interfax, on the other hand, announced that the plane was shot down by a missile while at an altitude of 10,000 meters (33,000 ft) in Ukrainian airspace. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko described the incident as an act of terrorism.

Another Malaysia Airlines’ Boeing 777-200ER type plane carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew on flight 370 had also disappeared for an unknown reason before this accident on 8 July 2014.

With 298 fatalities, Flight 17 was the largest aviation accident and the largest Boeing 777 fuselage loss since the September 11 attacks.

There were no survivors of the 283 passengers and 15 crew. More than two-thirds of the passengers were Dutch citizens.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17
Malaysia Airlines Flight 17
source: rferl.org – 17.07.2022

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 – About The Incident

            According to Malaysia Airlines, MH17 was scheduled to cruise at 35,000 feet while in Ukrainian airspace, but when it entered Ukrainian airspace, Ukrainian air traffic control unit told MH17 to cruise at 33,000 feet. Malaysia Airlines reported that the connection with MH17 from Ukraine Air Traffic Control was lost at 14:15, 50 km from the Russian-Ukrainian border.

            In the photographs taken from the crash site, fragmented aircraft and engine parts, body and passport parts of the people on the plane were found. Some pieces of debris also fell near houses in Hrabove. Dozens of body parts also fell on the fields, some inside homes. Miners who were working at the local mine and whose shifts were off, local police and the search team searched for survivors around the wreckage. After the plane was shot down, the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol) announced that the Eastern Ukraine region was closed to civilian flights.

            Shortly after the accident, Malaysia Airlines changed the flight number of the Amsterdam-Kuala Lumpur route to MH19. Shares of Malaysia Airlines fell 16% on July 18, 2014.

            In October 2015, the Dutch Flight Safety Authority confirmed that the plane had been hit by a BUK missile. In September 2106, the Joint Investigation Team, made up of Dutch, Australian, Belgian, Malaysian and Ukrainian officials, came to a similar conclusion. Also the International Joint Investigation Team (JIT) determined that the plane in question was shot down by a missile belonging to the Russian army. In the statement made by JIT, it was stated that the missile was from the 53rd Brigade of the Russian military unit in Koersk. In the statement, it was pointed out that about 4 weeks before the downing of the passenger plane MH17, a missile found in the convoy where the Russian-made Buk missiles were on their way from Koersk to Ukraine had similarities with the missile on which the plane was shot down.

            JIT, which investigated the downing of the MH17 plane, requested international arrest for 4 people. The suspects, who are stated to be former members of the Russian army, are held responsible for the shooting down of MH17 with a BUK missile and the death of 298 people. The prosecution argued that the defendants were “fully responsible” for the downing of the plane.

Malaysia Airlines Flight 17
Malaysia Airlines Flight 17
source: britannica – 17.07.2022

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malaysia_Airlines_Flight_17 – 17.07.2022

https://www.britannica.com/event/Malaysia-Airlines-flight-17 – 17.07.2022

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-28357880 – 17.07.2022