MH370 lost in a ‘broken ocean’, says daily


As the search continues in the Indian Ocean for signs of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, the staggering amount of rubbish in the sea is hampering efforts to find possible debris from the missing aircraft.

Among those who had highlighted this problem is Fairfax writer Greg Ray whose article “The Ocean is Broken“, written last year went viral on social media, reported The Maitland Mercury.

In the article, Ray had quoted Newcastle yachtsman Ivan Macfadyen who had sailed from Melbourne to Osaka and from there to San Francisco who expressed his sadness and horror at the astounding volume of garbage he encountered in the ocean during his journey.

Ivan told Ray that one of the things he noticed was the absence of the cries of the seabirds which, on all previous similar voyages, had surrounded the boat.

The birds were missing because the fish were missing.

Instead, in its place was a huge amount of garbage floating in the ocean.

“We saw a factory chimney sticking out of the water, with some kind of boiler thing still attached below the surface. We saw a big container-type thing, just rolling over and over on the waves,” Ivan’s brother, Glenn, who boarded at Hawaii for the run into the United States told Ray.

“We were weaving around these pieces of debris. It was like sailing through a garbage tip.

“Below decks you were constantly hearing things hitting against the hull, and you were constantly afraid of hitting something really big. As it was, the hull was scratched and dented all over the place from bits and pieces we never saw,” Ray quoted Macfadyen as saying.

Ray wrote that plastic was everywhere, including bottles, bags and every kind of throwaway domestic item you can imagine, from broken chairs to dustpans, toys and utensils.

Even the boat’s paint job was not spared, he said, adding that the boat’s vivid yellow paint job, never faded by sun or sea in years gone past, reacted with something in the water off Japan, losing its sheen in a strange and unprecedented way.

Glenn also told Ray that there were “thousands of thousands” of yellow plastic buoys.

There were also huge tangles of synthetic rope, fishing lines and nets. Pieces of polystyrene foam by the million. And slicks of oil and petrol, everywhere.

Countless hundreds of wooden power poles are out there, snapped off by the killer wave and still trailing their wires in the middle of the sea, Ray wrote.