Updates To MH370, Two Years After Its Disappearance, Are Few And Far Between
It's been two years since Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Few leads and very little information has been gathered since then, unfortunately. Authorities are still searching for the aircraft and its crew and passengers, though updates on the search for MH370 are few and far between. In the weeks following the plane's disappearance, search and rescue efforts were handed off to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, who have continued to work with Malaysian and Chinese authorities.
The latest information released about MH370 search efforts suggests that search efforts from the three countries — which have cost upwards of $130 million — will be wrapping up this year. Authorities have no plans to expand their search area and will cease exploration of a designated international search zone once crews have combed 120,000 square kilometers. Still, the man heading up this challenging project has stated that it's highly likely the plane will be found through those efforts.
Martin Dolan, the man leading that search, has stated he's confident MH370 will be found this year. Speaking with The Guardian on the eve of the second anniversary of the plane's disappearance, the ATSB commissioner had this to say about the search efforts:
It's as likely on the last day [of the search] as on the first that the aircraft would be there. We've covered nearly three quarters of the search area, and since we haven't found the aircraft in those areas, that increases the likelihood that it's in the areas we haven't looked at yet. ... At some point, whatever the total of the evidence is, is going to have to be assessed and a conclusion reached as to the most likely solution to the mystery.
Dolan added that authorities' ultimate goal is to piece together what happened to flight MH370, though he's unsure how much information or how extensive of an answer his team will have once their search concludes. The missing Boeing 777 carrying 239 passengers took off from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia shortly after midnight on March 8, 2014. MH370 was en route to Beijing, though the flight reportedly appeared to deviate from that path. The circumstances surrounding its disappearance are especially curious given the fact that necessary communication devices appear to have been switched off following its disappearance.
Officials ultimately began searching an extensive remote section of the Indian Ocean following research efforts that have bolstered the claim that the flight reversed course and continued in the air for at least six hours before potentially crashing. Its wreckage is presumed to have sunken. The terrain from the seafloor is particularly treacherous, with depths varying by as much as 2,000 meters, making detection efforts all the more difficult. The investigation is expected to wrap up this summer no matter what authorities end up finding in the ocean below.