Why Were There No Calls From Missing Jet?
Experts say plane may have been too high for signal
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 18, 2014 1:05 AM CDT
Updated Mar 18, 2014 2:00 AM CDT
Students from the Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino High School walk on a mural depicting the missing Malaysia Airlines plane.   (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

(Newser) – One of the biggest puzzles inside the huge mystery of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 is why there appear to have been no phone calls, social media messages, or any other attempts at communication from the 227 passengers after the flight was apparently diverted. Experts say that in contrast to the planes hijacked on Sept. 11, 2001, the Malaysia Airlines jet may have been flying too high for personal electronic devices to contact base stations on the ground, the New York Times finds. More alarmingly, the altitude change could have left passengers unconscious.

But another reason for the lack of communication from passengers could simply have been that they were unaware anything was amiss, at least at first, Slate finds. Most passengers were probably asleep when the late-night flight was diverted, and the only way any passengers still awake would have known about the change in course would be if they had been watching the tracker on the in-flight entertainment system, which can easily be disabled from the cockpit.