Days before the second year anniversary marking the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, investigators made a significant discovery in Mozambique. According to reports, authorities have found a metal fragment which they believe came from the missing plane.
As reported by Bloomberg, the fragment, which measures about a meter in length, was found on a sandbank in Mozambique. This is located in the Mozambique Channel where debris washed up from the Indian Ocean usually end up.
Authorities, however, have not yet confirmed if the fragment is really part of the MH370 plane. However, according to a statement from the Australian government, which oversees the investigation on the aircraft's disappearance, the area where the metal piece was discovered is consistent with the projection models created by investigators.
"A piece of metal, approximately one meter in length, has been found on a beach in Mozambique," the Minster of Infrastructure and Transport said in a statement.
"The location of the debris is consistent with drift modelling commissioned by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau and reaffirms the search area for MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean," the agency added.
For now, investigators will examine the fragment to verify if it really came from the missing plane. Although no confirmations have been made yet, it is believed that the piece was part of the aircraft's tail.
According to experts, if proven to be a part of the plane, the fragment will pay a crucial role in the investigation. The former head of the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board Jim Wildey said that it could tell investigators what happened to the plane.
He explained that if the piece came off as the plane hit the water, then it can be considered that the aircraft encountered a different type of damage than if it broke loose while in mid-air.
Also, if the damage on the fragment was caused by the plane's impact, then it could also provide important clues regarding the orientation of the aircraft as it crashed on the sea.
MH370 departed an airport in Juala Lumpur in March 8, 2014 and was headed to Beijing, China. However, about an hour after taking off, it disappeared from radar screens. It is still not yet clear what exactly happened to the plane and its 239 passengers.