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Missing plane: Search continues

Posted on Mar 29 2014 | IBNS

Sydney, Mar 29 : Friday's search area for the missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 was shifted north of Australia's West Coast in the Indian Ocean after international air crash investigators in Malaysia updated their previous analysis of the likely aircraft movements, said the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) amid reports of sightings of various floating objects.

Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein told reporters near Kuala Lumpur, however, that there was no new information of the objects sited floating in the Indian Ocean.

"I've got to wait to get the reports on whether they have retrieved those objects. Those will give us some indication," said Hishammuddin.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) assessed this update as credible, and advised AMSA of the new basis for a revised search area.

AMSA then applied the effects of weather and currents to develop Friday's search area.

Five aircraft spotted multiple objects of various colours during Friday's search.

The objects cannot be verified or discounted as being from MH370 until they are relocated and recovered by ships. It is not known how much flotsam, such as from fishing activities, is ordinarily there. At least one distinctive fishing object has been identified.

Friday's weather is expected initially to be suitable for searching but conditions are expected to deteriorate later in the day.

The Chinese Maritime Safety Administration ship Haixun 01 has been on scene for relocating objects from first light.

Search activities involves a total of 8 aircraft. They include three Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) P3 Orions, a Japanese Coast Guard jet, a
Japanese P3 Orion, a Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P3 Orion, a Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force Ilyushin IL-76, and one civil jet acting as a communications relay.

The first aircraft to depart was the Chinese Ilyushin IL-76, which departed at 9:05am (Australia time). The first RAAF P3 Orion departed at 9:50am, with two others scheduled to depart about 12pm and 2pm. The civil jet was scheduled to depart about 1 pm.

The Japan Coast Guard jet was scheduled to depart about 2pm. The Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) P3 Orion was scheduled to depart about 3pm. The Japanese P3 Orion was scheduled to depart about 4pm (all Australia time).

Six ships are expected to reach the search area Friday, tasked with relocating the objects sighted, but will arrive late in the day or after dark.

Earlier a Thai satellite had detected about 300 objects floating in the southern Indian Ocean near the search area for the aircraft, reports said.

Malaysia on Wednesday last had said new satellite images have detected 122 potential objects which might be related to the missing aircraft.

The objects were detected approximately 2,557 km from Perth in Australia.

Malaysian Minister Hishammuddin Hussein earlier said the Malaysian Remote Sensing Agency (MRSA) on Tuesday received the new satellite images that were taken on Mar 23 from Airbus Defence and Space in France.

Malaysian Airlines, the flag carrier airline of Malaysia, on Tuesday last confirmed that its flight MH370 is now lost for ever in the Southern Indian Ocean and there are no survivors.

The Malaysia Airlines flight, which was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew and went missing since Mar 8.

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