Those of you who are familiar with my military background know that I have experience in looking for downed aircraft, and other things, lost at sea. Which is likely why some of you keep asking me for an opinion on the missing jetliner. Here you go:
Because the ocean is a damned big place, vaster than you can imagine unless you’ve sailed across it (and, because I know you people, yes, I HAVE indeed sailed this part of the world, it’s vast, and complicated and dangerous). And even when you know exactly, and I mean EXACTLY, where to look, it’s still extremely difficult to find scattered bits of airplane or, to be blunt, scattered bits of people in the water. As a navy sailor, I’ve spent days searching for lost aircraft and airmen, and even if you think you know where the bird went down, the winds and the currents can spread the debris across hundreds or even thousands of miles of ocean in fairly short order. No machine, no computer, can search this volume, you have to put human eyeballs on every inch of the search area. You have to inspect every item you come across – and the oceans of the world are FULL of flotsam, jetsam, debris, junk, trash, crap, bits, and pieces. Often neither the sea nor the weather cooperates, it is INCREDIBLY difficult to spot a item the size of a human being in the water, among the swells and the spray, even if you know exactly where to look – and the sea conditions in this part of the world are some of the worst, especially this time of year.
Yeah, but what about a fuel slick, we should be able to see that, right?