MH370 Operational Search Update—
04 May 2016
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
- Fugro Discovery experienced problems with its deep-tow side scan sonar on 1 May, requiring the equipment to be reset. As this created a gap in the data, the vessel turned and transited back to the point at which the signal had begun to degrade before re-running the line to ensure complete coverage of the area. Search operations are continuing.
- Fugro Equator departed the search area on 29 April, and is en route to Fremantle to conduct a scheduled resupply visit.
- Dong Hai Jiu 101 will shortly depart Fremantle port and proceeded to the calibration range to test the recovered SLH-ProSAS-60 deep tow system. Once testing is complete, the vessel will return to Fremantle for supplies, before departing for the search area.
Underwater search operations
More than 105,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far. 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.
Consistent with the undertaking given by the Governments of Australia, Malaysia and the People's Republic of China in April last year, 120,000 square kilometres will be thoroughly searched. It is anticipated this will be completed around the middle of the year. In the absence of credible new information that leads to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, Governments have agreed that there will be no further expansion of the search area.
[Click map to view larger image]
Fine weather is expected over the coming days but deteriorating conditions on Saturday may impact search operations.