The latest debris was found by adventurer Blaine Gibson on a beach in Madagascar Blaine Alan Gibson
The man who spotted debris washed up on a beach in Madagascar which could be from missing flight MH370 has said he is “overwhelmed with emotion” by the discovery.
Blaine Alan Gibson, who in February found a part from Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 in Mozambique, came across a number of new fragments while combing a beach in north east Madagascar.
The pieces will be examined by investigators to see if they also came from the missing plane, officials said on Friday.
Mr Gibson is an American adventurer who has taken it upon himself to look for Flight 370 for more than a year.
His independent search has taken him to Thailand, Australia, Mauritius, Mozambique, and now Madagascar among other places.
“I was riding on a quad, as there was 18km to cover, and out of the corner of my eye, I spotted a light-grey, whitish thing that looked a little big,” he told The Independent.
“As soon as I took a closer look, I immediately thought of the panel I'd found in Mozambique. It was the same grey colour, it had the same holes in it. When I picked it up, it felt heavier, but the back looked similar.
“I was sure it was part of the plane. I just thought 'oh my god, it's happened again'”
|Students at Hailiang International School light candles for the passengers on missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370|
Experts determined the debris Mr Gibson previously found off the coast of Mozambique was from the missing Boeing 777 which vanished more than two years ago with 239 people on board.
Malaysian authorities, who are leading the investigation into the plane's disappearance, have procedures in place to examine any suspected debris, though Australia will help analyse Mr Gibson's discovery if asked, according to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.
Mr Gibson said the piece which touched him the most was the fragment which resembles a screen monitor case from the back of a seat.
“It had coat hook, like in economy class,” he said. “That one really touched me.”
“The panel and first piece I found are just parts of a plane. But this is something from the cabin, that you see when you're sitting there.
“I felt overwhelmed with emotion thinking if this is from MH370, this could have been one of the last things the passenger saw.”
In a separate development, a man found a piece of debris on an island off southern Australia that the transport bureau will examine, said ATSB spokesperson.
That piece was found on Kangaroo Island, just off the coast of South Australia state. The part shows it bears the words “No step” — a phrase that also appeared on the part that Mr Gibson found in Mozambique in February.
Mr Gibson said his beachcombing method was to “study the currents and drift, I talk to oceanographers and when I get to a place, I talk to local boatmen and fishermen, or divers, and ask where ocean debris normally washes ashore.”
“I have always loved to travel and solve mysteries,” he said. “I got interested in Malaysia MH370 when the story broke while I was selling my family home,
“After a year of not finding any piece, I decided to go looking myself.”
French police officers carry a piece of debris from a plane in Saint-Andre, Reunion Island.
He funds his travels through savings from the sale of his home and said he is “not an expensive traveller”.
“I don't really have family, but my friends think it's great I'm doing it and it's had some success. They probably think I'm spending a little too much time on it, but they know I love travelling and I'm very interested and care about this, and I'm making a difference.
“The main support has been from the family members who are very happy, even though I've been bringing them bad news, they want the truth, whatever it is.”
Several pieces of the plane have washed up over the past year on coastlines around the Indian Ocean. But officials have had no luck finding the main underwater wreckage despite an extensive search of a vast area of the Indian Ocean off Australia's west coast.
Crews are expected to complete their sweep of the 120,000 square kilometres (46,000 square miles) area by August, and there are no plans to extend the hunt beyond that.