Australia, Malaysia, China halt MH370 underwater search
After nearly three years, the hunt for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 ended in futility and frustration, as crews completed their deep-sea search in the Indian Ocean without finding a trace of the plane.
The Joint Agency Coordination Center in Australia, which has helped lead the $160 million hunt for the Boeing 777 in remote waters west of Australia, said the search had officially been suspended after crews finished their fruitless sweep of the 120,000-square kilometre search zone.
Australian Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester, China’s Minister of Transport Li Xiaopeng and Malaysian Minister of Transport Liow Tiong Lai said in a joint-statement on Tuesday the 120,000 square kilometre underwater search in the Indian Ocean has been officially suspended after failing to locate the Boeing 777-200ER, 9M-MRO.
“Today the last search vessel has left the underwater search area,” the ministers’ statement said.
“Despite every effort using the best science available, cutting-edge technology, as well as modelling and advice from highly skilled professionals who are the best in their field, unfortunately, the search has not been able to locate the aircraft,” the agency said in a statement, which was a joint communique between the transport ministers of Malaysia, Australia and China.
“Accordingly, the underwater search for MH370 has been suspended. The decision to suspend the underwater search has not been taken lightly nor without sadness.”
On the other hand, the effected families of disappeared flight MH370 showed annoyance on the decision, and called suspension of underwater search an “irresponsible decision.“
Remember, the flight MH370 had a total of 239 passengers on board, twelve of them were crew members, 152 passengers were Chinese including fourteen prominent artists, fifty Malaysian, seven Indonesian, six Australian, five Indian, four French and three were American.
Next-of-kin association Voice370 said it was “dismayed” with the search’s suspension and called on authorities to extend the hunt.
“In our view, extending the search to the new area defined by the experts is an inescapable duty owed to the flying public in the interest of aviation safety,” Voice370 said in a statement.
“Commercial planes cannot just be allowed to disappear without a trace.”