MH370 Operational Search Update—
12 August 2015
This operational report has been developed to provide regular updates on the progress of the search effort for MH370. Our work will continue to be thorough and methodical, so sometimes weekly progress may seem slow. Please be assured that work is continuing and is aimed at finding MH370 as quickly as possible.
Key developments this week
- On 29 July 2015 aircraft wreckage was found on La Réunion. Subsequent examination indicates that in all probability the wreckage, a wing part known as a flaperon, was from MH370. Any additional debris that is found will be examined to determine if it too can be linked to MH370.
- Fugro Discovery has arrived in the search area. Weather conditions slowed its transit, and the vessel arrived back in the search area last night and commenced operations earlier today.
- Fugro Equator arrived in Fremantle this morning for routine resupply and will depart for the search area tomorrow. The vessel is expected to be back in the search area around 19 August.
- Regular port and resupply visits are a necessary part of vessel maintenance and crew well-being. The crossover of ships was anticipated and is part of the ongoing search plan.
As announced in April, the search area has been expanded beyond an original 60,000 square kilometre search area to enable up to 120,000 square kilometres to be searched if required.
Search plans were revised in April to ensure that the area can be searched as quickly and effectively as possible. The Fugro vessels have undergone winterisation to enable continuous search operations over the coming months. The safety of the search crews, as always, remains a priority and vessels and equipment utilised will vary to reflect operational needs.
More than 60,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.
[Click map to view larger image]
The Search Strategy Working Group continues to review evidence associated with MH370 which may result in further refinement of, or prioritisation within, the search area.
In the event the aircraft is found and accessible, Australia, Malaysia and the People's Republic of China have agreed to plans for recovery activities including securing all the evidence necessary for the accident investigation.
The weather is forecast to be mixed this coming week. Search operations will carry on through the winter months, but pauses are anticipated.