Washington- The missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370 could have flown for an extra four hours after it lost contact with air traffic controllers and could had been hijacked and landed in Pakistan, according to American media reports.
In another dramatic twist, aviation experts believe the plane flew for a total of five hours under radar.
The possibility means the plane could have travelled for another 2,200 miles to Pakistan or Mongolia, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The plane could had been hijacked and taken to an unknown location – one of many theories as to what may have happened to the disappearing plane.
The Wall Street Journal said it isn’t clear whether investigators have evidence of a hijacking – but they haven’t ruled the possibility out.
US investigators are looking into the prospect and counter terrorism officials are investigating the idea that the plane’s transponders were turned off intentionally and the aircraft was diverted when an image appeared to show debris.
It is based on data automatically downloaded and sent to the ground from the aircraft’s Rolls Royce engines as part of a standard monitoring program.
The Boeing 777 jetliner vanished six days ago with 239 people on board. The flight left Kuala Lumpur at 4.41pm GMT bound for Beijing, but less than 50 minutes later it lost communication with air traffic control. But a senior Malaysia Airlines official told journalists that no such data relating to the potential extra flight time existed, while a second official said he was unaware of it too.
A spokesperson for engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce had no immediate comment. Malaysia Airlines said previously the engines stopped transmitting monitoring signals when contact with the plane was lost. The engines should transmit live data to the ground every 30 minutes.
Hopes were raised when a Chinese state agency released satellite images of three pieces of large debris floating near the plane’s last recorded position in the South China Sea but found nothing.