- The pilot in command was 53-year-old Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah from Penang. He joined Malaysia Airlines as a cadet pilot in 1981 and, after training and receiving his commercial pilot’s licence, became a Second Officer with the airline in 1983. Zaharie was promoted to Captain of Boeing 737-400 in 1991, Captain of Airbus A330-300 in 1996, and to Captain of Boeing 777-200 in 1998. He had been a Type Rating Instructor and Type Rating Examiner since 2007 and had 18,365 hours of flying experience.:13
- The co-pilot was 27-year-old First Officer Fariq Abdul Hamid. He joined Malaysia Airlines as a cadet pilot in 2007 and became a Second Officer on Boeing 737-400 aircraft. He was promoted to First Officer of Boeing 737-400 aircraft in 2010 and later transitioned to Airbus A330-300 aircraft in 2012. In November 2013, he began training as First Officer on Boeing 777-200 aircraft. Flight 370 was his final training flight and he was scheduled to be examined on his next flight. Fariq had 2,763 hours of flying experience.:14
Although Captain Zaharie was estranged from his wife, there is no record of animosity or violence.
But the undeniable fact is that he was in charge (not necessarily control) of the aircraft, and it changed course and turned the transponder off.
The difficulty with either pilot downing this aircraft on his own would mean he would have to incapacitate the very guy that knew as much as the other on how to avert this happening.
Normally not a huge problem on its own….but when you are trying to hide an aircraft on your own from prying eyes that monitor you …….would be a daunting task both together at once!