OLD GREENWICH – When Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappeared in March 2014, Christine Negroni, a mother and aviation writer from Old Greenwich, was already working on a book about lessons that can be learned from plane crashes. She was sent to Malaysia to help ABC News with their coverage, and came back several weeks later with a book deal.
Negroni, like most of us, was intrigued by the theories surrounding what happened on board, but as an expert, easily discredited most of them.
“From the beginning, nothing made sense from just too many people saying too many things that weren’t knowable,” said Negroni.
As she began writing and continued researching, she was reminded of a similar case she covered as an aviation safety investigator. It wasn’t her intention, but she ended up writing a theory of her own.
“You look at me and you say, ‘So I’m a middle aged woman sitting in her home in Old Greenwich, Connecticut, and I've solved the mystery of Malaysia 370.' That’s sort of the surface fact of it. But it's not coming out of nowhere. It’s coming out of years of understanding the commonalities in aviation accidents and looking at some of the things we know happened on Malaysia 370,” she said.
In her book "The Crash Detectives," released last month, she explains her theory and the facts behind it.
She thinks the plane somehow lost pressurization, and in the process, the pilots lost control of their own decision making and ultimately, the plane itself.
Negroni explained, “[He] continued to make decisions of an oxygen starved brain to veer the airplane this way and that, and finally, when he went unconscious, the plane continued on for 5 hours and then ran out of fuel and disappeared into the south Indian Ocean.”
Because it’s based on fact, it’s been deemed a very credible explanation. She told FOX 61 it’s frustrating to hear other theories, such as the plane flew into a black hole or the plane was hijacked and taken to Kazakhstan.
She said, “These things are based on fantasy. They're not based on any kind of reality, so it is frustrating. I've put out there a theory that in the aviation safety community, of which I am a part, no one has yet to say to me, ‘Christine, it can't happen this way.’”
Negroni stresses we may never know what happened on board MH370, so we may never be able to prove or disprove her theory, but she says her explanation does point to some flaws on other airplanes.
“Even if they find the part, there’s no saying that the cockpit voice recorder or the flight data recorder will be illuminating, so we may not know even then what happened. So in the meantime, what do we do? Do we just say, ‘Oh we'll never know,’ and go away? Or do we look at what could have happened and fix the potential problems? That’s what air safety is all about. That’s why we do crash investigations,” she said.
Negroni will be speaking at the Ferguson Public Library in Stamford from 7 to 8:30 on November 1 .