Missing Malaysian airlines flight and terror strike probe
Malaysia Airlines planes sit on the tarmac at the Kuala Lumpur International AirportReuters

The US aviation watchdog had warned airlines of a problem with cracks in Boeing 777s that could lead to a mid-air break up.

The revelation follows the disappearance of a Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 Boeing 777 aircraft.

The Federal Aviation Administration had reportedly issued airlines an urgent directive in September 2013, to detect and repair cracks in the fuselage skin on Boeing 777s.

The FAA warned that failure to conduct necessary repairs would leave the aircraft vulnerable to "a rapid decompression and loss of structural integrity."

A sudden drop in cabin pressure can cause, the crew and passengers to become unconscious.

As a result of the alert, one airline had discovered a 16-in crack in the fuselage skin of a 14-year-old plane.

However, Boeing have said that the FAA alert did not apply to the missing jet because it did not have the same antenna as the rest of the Boeing 777s.

Malaysian Airlines have insisted that the missing Boeing was airworthy before taking off, but declined to reveal whether it had been inspected for any potential problem with the fuselage.

The Chinese Government last night released a satellite image of suspected debris from the vanished jet in the South China seas.

It has since been suggested that the plane went down in the Indian ocean and White House spokesman Jay Carney has confirmed that a new search area may be opened in the region.

Despite extensive investigations, authorities are no closer to explaining what happened to the plane or the 239 people and crew on board.

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 Crash Map
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 Crash Map


Flight MH370 took off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport en route to Beijing at 00:41 on Saturday 8 March (16:41 GMT Friday).

About 50 minutes later, the aircraft lost contact with air traffic control.

No distress call was made.

On board, there were 12 Malaysian crew members and 227 passengers from 14 countries. That included 153 Chinese and 38 Malaysians.

Two Iranian male passengers, Pouria Nour Mohammad Mahread and Delavar Syed Mohammad Reza, were travelling on fake passports. Neither had any apparent links to terrorist groups.

No debris from the plane has been found in the international search.

At least 10 countries, including China, the US and Singapore, were using a total of 42 ships and 39 aircraft to search for the missing plane in the South China Sea, the Malacca Strait and the Andaman Sea.