MH370 Operational Search Update—
17 August 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 Equator is in the search area. Sea conditions over the weekend were not suitable for deep tow operations. The vessel is standing by in the search area until the weather allows search operations to recommence.
- Dong Hai Jiu 101 remains in Fremantle. Projected weather conditions for the next several weeks preclude the effective deployment of search equipment from this vessel. Dong Hai Jiu 101 will remain at anchor off Fremantle until weather conditions improve.
Underwater Search Operations
More than 110,000 square kilometres of the seafloor have been searched so far.
At a meeting of Ministers from Malaysia, Australia and the People's Republic of China held on 22 July 2016, it was agreed that should the aircraft not be located in the current search area, and in the absence of credible new evidence leading to the identification of a specific location of the aircraft, the search would be suspended upon completion of the 120,000 square kilometre search area.
Ministers went to great lengths to explain that this does not mean the termination of the search. Should credible new information emerge that can be used to identify the specific location of the aircraft, consideration will be given to determining next steps.
[Click map to view larger image]
Weather conditions are forecast to be poor over the coming days, but improving towards the end of the week. Strong winds and rough seas are expected to impact on search operations.