How to Hide an Airplane
For more than 2 weeks thousands of Boeing mechanics, engineers, and managers searched the facility from end to end numerous times. The plane was nowhere to be found. Manufacturing records showed that it was about 90% complete, not ready to fly. Maybe it was towed to another part of Renton airport? Boeing searched the whole airport. The plane was not to be found. They finally sent notifications to all Boeing employees including myself who worked at another Boeing facility. They asked us to inspect all other 727 planes and hidden corners trying to find it. It just had VANISHED!
After being missing for more than 2 weeks some Boeing mechanic noticed that not much wok was being done to one of the airplanes nearing the end of their manufacturing assembly line. When he asked factory management they looked on their records and said that lots of work had been done. “Nope” said the mechanic. Nobody has touched it. So they went out and looked again at the airplane.
Someone had accidentally put a wrong number sign on the plane. Thousands of Engineers, Managers, and mechanics had literally ducked their heads under its wings while they searched in vein for the plane. Everyone had checked the number sign, and said to himself “nope, not this one.” They all look the same. It had been “LOST” in the middle of Boeing's assembly line for 2 weeks with thousands of airplane experts looking for it.
The missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 could be hiding in plane sight at any busy airport in the world. Thousands of knowledgeable experts and security people would look and check its number. “Nope, Not the plane we are looking for.”
The pilots would have to shut off the planes' transponder and ACARS system and fly out of ground radar range over the ocean. Then they could load new fake flight numbers and ID numbers into the transponder and turn it back on. POOF! Plane gone!
Pilots would then turn the transponder back on and show up on a regular air route, calling the next flight controllers as they enter the next country. The “NEW” plane would be seen flying regular commercial air routs with a fake flight plan and numbers. At night they could land at any busy airport as a regular fuel stop on a charter or maintenance flight. Nobody would ask any questions.
In the dark they could repaint the tail numbers to match their fake ID transponder codes, and use a little spray paint to cover the Malaysian Airlines logs. Or, have some stick on white plastic sign material saying “ACME Charters.” A mechanic could replace the engine ACARS boxes with reprogrammed boxes. That all would take maybe an hour in the dark at the maintenance end of the airport. By dawn, its just “not that plane,” not even up close. Off they go to Iran, Somalia, Libya, or even Kansas. Nobody would ask any questions about the plane.
When you want to hide a plane, hide it in plane sight. Not even Boeing could find it, not even when they bonk their head on its wings.
UPDATE April 3, 2014.
A recent cell phone photo from missing IBM employee gives a GPS location as a hanger in Diego Garcia. All these phony "searches" in the Indian Ocean are a red herring intended to divert attention from any real investigation or search. See news story.