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Report: Oil rig worker tells employer he saw Malaysia airliner go down

Posted by Jack Pickell  March 12, 2014 07:44 AM

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ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff has obtained a letter that an oil rig worker in Vietnam wrote to his employer claiming he saw Malaysia Airlines flight 370 intact and "burning at high altitude."

Woodruff tweeted an image of the letter:

Woodruff warned in a separate tweet that the worker's claims are not confirmed and in fact could be a hoax:

Meanwhile, Malaysian authorities have acknowledged they aren't sure of the direction flight MH370 was headed when it vanished, the Associated Press reported:

Indonesian air force Col. Umar Fathur said the country had received official information from Malaysian authorities that the plane was above the South China Sea, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Kota Bharu, Malaysia, when it turned back toward the strait and then disappeared. That would place its last confirmed position closer to Malaysia than has previously been publicly disclosed.

Confusion over whether the plane had been spotted flying west has prompted speculation that different arms of the government have different opinions about where the plane is most likely to be, or even that authorities are holding back information.

An effort by the US satellite company Digital Globe seeking volunteers to comb through satellite images in search of the jet resulted in the company's website being overloaded, NPR reported:

DigitalGlobe issued a call for volunteers to sift through satellite images of waters in the Gulf of Thailand and elsewhere that were taken after flight MH370 went missing this weekend. The company is continuing to put images on its Tomnod site, which it calls a "platform for crowdsourcing satellite imagery."

Hours after the company's request for help went out Monday afternoon, the response brought "unprecedented load on our servers," the company said in an update on Twitter.

In an earlier version of this story, the reporting on Digital Globe's effort was incorrectly attributed to WGBH, which hosted the report but attributed the information to NPR.

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