Journalist Ean Higgins, who authored a recently released book titled "The Hunt for MH370”, has accused the captain of the doomed Malaysia Airline’s flight, Zaharie Ahmad Shah, of depressurising the aircraft just 40 minutes into the flight.
“You can just press a button above your head and the aircraft will cut the oxygen. We think he also tripped the circuit of the lights in the passenger cabins to make it dark. He then flew on for about another six hours”, he told the Australian broadcaster ABC News.
According to the truth-seeker, who, like many others, is trying to discover what happened to the mysterious plane, there “is a possibility the pilot was flying until the end”.
Some conspiracy theorists have already pointed at Shah as a possible culprit. His political beliefs and mental health have been scrutinised after the 8 March 2014 crash of the Boeing 777. Unconfirmed reports said he may have been unhappy due to marital issues and deliberately took the airliner off course to elope with his mistress and start a new life, but never made it. Some even speculated that he was devastated by the controversial conviction of Malaysia's then opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim, on sodomy charges just hours before the plane took off.
However, the pilot’s family and friends vehemently rejected such claims as groundless, saying that he “loved life”, had a flawless flying record, and would never crash the plane.
The hypoxia explanation remains the current official theory of the Malaysian government and the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB). Some experts claim that a mechanical or structural failure led to the crash, positing that a blaze could have broken out in the plane’s electronics, causing smoke to fill the plane and leading to mass hypoxia (oxygen deprivation) on board. It concludes that the pilot was unconscious towards the end of the flight, as the plane continued on autopilot over the Indian Ocean, where search efforts have been focused, before running out of fuel and crashing.