Meet the Person Behind the Most MH370 Discoveries: Unveiling Their Astonishing Stories.Thai

Mr. Blaine Gibson, self-proclaimed adventurer, holds the “No Step” fragment of flight MH370. Photo: Gibson

Page 9News reported on March 7 that the first piece of debris that Mr. Blaine Gibson – a retired US attorney – discovered on February 27, 2016 (nearly 2 years after MH370 disappeared) was triangular and was part of the tail of the plane.

The debris drifted onto a remote sandbar off the coast of Mozambique, Africa. It is called “No Step”, coinciding with the words printed on the fragment.

Mr. Gibson was surprised at how light the fragment was. “I picked it up and wondered if it was too light for an airplane part?” Mr. Gibson said.

“But I still believe this is plane debris,” the 66-year-old explorer added.

Australian government investigators later confirmed that the debris was from the missing plane MH370. After that, 22 other pieces of MH370 were found by Mr. Gibson in many ways, such as self-discovery or being handed over by people along the east coast of Africa or islands in the Indian Ocean.

Detecting debris is very important in the search for missing aircraft. And how Mr. Gibson discovered it made many people even more curious.

In September 2025, Mr. Gibson had a quite coincidental meeting in Perth city (Australia) with Professor Charitha Pattiaratchi – an Australian oceanographer who has set up thousands of in-depth and highly detailed simulations on computers to track when and where MH370 debris may drift to.

Before arriving in Perth, Mr. Gibson went to Reunion Island to talk to Johnny Begue, a local resident who accidentally discovered a part of the wing on July 29, 2015.

Mr. Gibson’s trip to Reunion Island brought important information, helping to piece together what may have happened to plane MH370.

Officers carry the side wing of plane MH370 discovered on Reunion Island. Photo: EPA

Officers carry the side wing of plane MH370 discovered on Reunion Island. Photo: EPA

Mr. Gibson said, Mr. Johnny recalled, the debris washed up on the beach near Saint André – a coastal location where the debris “stick” for a short time.

“When he got to the beach, a part of the wing was hit by waves. Johnny and a few others pulled it out of the water. We determined the date the debris appeared. That’s very important,” Mr. Gibson said.

Mr. Gibson then passed that information to Professor Pattiaratchi in Australia. For this professor, having a specific timeline of the fragment is like the moment of inventing something new. That information helps Professor Pattiaratchi refine his models of drift.

Knowing how fast ocean currents in the Indian Ocean can move an object, Professor Pattiaratchi calculated the reverse path of the debris before it drifted to Reunion Island.

The starting point of the drifting process is the area off the west coast of Australia. Professor Pattiaratchi firmly believes that that area is where the wreckage of MH370 can be found.

After meeting with Mr. Johnny on Reunion Island and reading Professor Pattiaratchi’s prediction about the wing fragment, Mr. Gibson immediately went to Perth city to meet the professor.

Mr. Gibson (left) and Professor Pattiaratchi. Photo: Gibson

Mr. Gibson (left) and Professor Pattiaratchi. Photo: Gibson

Mr. Gibson was informed by an Australian professor that the next place where debris from MH370 could be found was Mozambique – a country in southeast Africa.

Professor Pattiarachi said Mr Gibson could find local fishermen and ask them where debris or floating objects tend to drift in the area.

Mr. Gibson boarded a flight to Mozambique and did as the professor said. The rest is history: Mr. Gibson found the “No Step” fragment.

“I have in my hands the second piece of the greatest aviation mystery ever,” Gibson shared his thoughts at the time.

The coordinates of the debris discovery are recorded. Mr. Gibson also immediately informed Professor Pattiarachi via Facebook. “He was the one who told me to go to Mozambique. He also showed me drift prediction models and he predicted exactly where and when debris would wash up on the coast,” the American explorer speak.

It's been 10 years since flight MH370 disappeared. Illustrative photo: Luis G. Rendon

It’s been 10 years since flight MH370 disappeared. Illustrative photo: Luis G. Rendon

Professor Pattiarachi strongly believes that the remains of plane MH370 are located at the bottom of the ocean, in an area about 2,000km west of Perth (Australia). Mr. Gibson and some researchers also believe in Professor Pattiarachi’s prediction.

The search area that the Australian professor mentioned is from 33 degrees south to 28 degrees north on the search route called the Seventh Arc.

If Professor Pattiarachi’s prediction is correct, this is probably “bad news”. Because this area is very large and the terrain is difficult.

Much of the Seventh Arc area has been searched by the Australian government before and most recently by maritime search and rescue operator Ocean Infinity.

Ocean Infinity has signed a “no find, no fee” contract with the Malaysian government and the operator wants to embark on a second search along the 7th Arc, using newer search technology.

Two search areas where some experts believe MH370's body may be located. Photo: 9News

Two search areas where some experts believe MH370’s body may be located. Photo: 9News

“If MH370’s body is in that area, Ocean Infinity will find it,” Professor Pattiarachi said.

According to 9News, the Malaysian government took many months to consider Ocean Infinity’s request to open a new search.

On March 3, 2024, the Malaysian government announced that it is ready to reopen the search for flight MH370, if there is new reliable evidence.

According to Professor Pattiarachi, whether Malaysia decides to continue searching for MH370 or not, the plane will eventually be found. “One way or another, we will find it,” said the Australian professor.

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