Tuesday, May 24

Liow: MAS installs aircraft tracking system


PUTRAJAYA: National carrier Malaysia Airlines (MAS) has introduced a 15-minute aircraft data downloading system to keep track on its aircraft almost on real time basis.

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said he had ordered MAS to install an aircraft tracking system as part of enhancing aircraft security, as Malaysia emerged a key proponent for a real-time tracking system following the disappearance of the MAS flight MH370 a year ago.

“(Data downloading) every 15 minutes, very close to real time. For aircraft and aviation industry, 15 minutes signal downloading and data processing is of great importance,” he said at a media briefing here yesterday in conjunction with the first anniversary of the missing plane.

Flight MH370, which carried 12 crew members and 227 passengers, went off the radar screens while en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing about one hour after departing from the KL International Airport on March 8 last year.

It was scheduled to arrive in Beijing at 6.30 am on the same day.

Liow said Malaysia was currently working with Australia on an aircraft tracking system and welcomed Australia’s efforts to improve the system.

Malaysia, he said, had proposed to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) in its council meeting at Montreal, Canada last October to look into the installation of a real-time air-tracking system on all international commercial flights.

“ICAO took the proposal very seriously and had set up a special committee to analyse the proposal and will announce their decision by Aug 31.

“There are certain requirements and conditions attached to this real-time tracking system,” he said. — Bernama