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Victims wouldn't have suffered

Expert says those on board MH17 would have lost consciousness in seconds

A forensic expert said the crew and passengers on MH17 would not have suffered when the plane was shot down over Ukraine.

Mr David Royds, an Australian forensic disaster crime scene expert from the University of Canberra, said the 298 victims would have been killed instantly or remained conscious for only a few seconds after the Malaysian Airlines plane was hit by a missile.

"It's very unlikely the passengers would have suffered, there would have been no time to worry," the head of investigation into the 2002 Bali bombings told the Herald Sun.

An explosion would have triggered a chain reaction that would have "rendered the passengers unconscious within seconds". A culmination of dramatic and instant drop in air pressure and temperature, as well as a loss of oxygen, would have occurred.

Meanwhile, Singapore's civil aviation authority has asked airlines based here to review their risk assessment of conflict zones following the MH17 tragedy.

Singapore Airlines (SIA) was one of the heaviest users of the route in the week before the crash, along with other international carriers such as Lufthansa, Thai Airways and KLM.

RE-ROUTED

"We note that following the MH17 incident, SIA immediately re-routed its flights to avoid Ukrainian airspace," said the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) in an e-mail response to questions from Reuters.

"CAAS has also since asked Singapore carriers to review their risk assessment on conflict areas."

Besides SIA, low-cost carriers Tiger Airways, Scoot and Jetstar Asia are also based here.