The mystery of how Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crashed has somewhat been solved, as the Dutch Safety Board has determined that the plane was shot down by a Buk missile that was made in Russia.
The airplane, which was a Boeing 777 aircraft, crashed in July of last year, killing all 298 people that were on board. It was shot down while flying over eastern Ukraine. It is unknown who was responsible for bringing the plane down, though Russia is an obvious suspect.
Head of the Dutch Safety Board Tjibbe Joustra said, “A 9n314m warhead detonated outside the aeroplane to the left side of the cockpit. This fits the kind of warhead installed in the Buk surface-to-air missile system.”
Joustra held a meeting with the families of the victims in order to give them a better understanding of what happened. He said that the passengers who were not killed because of the impact of the missile were certainly rendered unconscious immediately due to the sudden decompression of the aircraft, as well as the lack of oxygen at 33,000 feet in the sky.
The meeting was held at the Filze-Rijen military base. At the base, sections of the aircraft were assembled from the wreckage that was brought back from Ukraine.
Additionally, the Dutch Safety Board also determined that Ukraine had reason to shut down airspace that was located above the conflict zone. The board also warned the 61 airlines that continued to fly planes there should have identified the possibility of danger. They sent a recommendation to international aviation policymakers to change aviation policies so that operators must be more open about their choice of routes.
Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was the second flight from Malaysia Airlines to crash in 2014. The other was Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 which crashed in March of that year. It is believed that the plane crashed into the Indian Ocean, but the wreckage was never found.