Putrajaya cuts back on MH370 search

A visitor writes on a poster carrying messages for the passengers onboard missing Malaysia Airlines (MAS) flight MH370 plane, during the 'MH370 Day of Remembrance' at a shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur on March 8, 2015. The Malaysian Insider/Najjua Zulkefli

Putrajaya has cancelled the contract for one of the world’s most experienced teams in the search of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, reports The Daily Beast.The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) yesterday confirmed with the news portal that the vessel, GO Phoenix, will quit the search this Friday on orders from Putrajaya.“The GO Phoenix, and the experts and equipment aboard are contracted by Malaysia,” Daniel O’Malley, the ATSB spokesman, told The Daily Beast via email.

“Putrajaya has advised that the contract will end with the completion of the current swing,” he was quoted as saying.The pullback of GO Phoenix was also stated in a media release issued by the Australian government’s Joint Action Coordination Centre (JACC) dated yesterday.The JACC is the body that coordinates the search for the aircraft that went missing on March 8 last year while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

The Daily Beast reported that the GO Phoenix was one of the world’s most experienced teams of deep-water search technicians, and that the ATSB gave no explanation as to why Putrajaya did not continue the contract.The Boeing 777 carrying 239 people last made contact with air traffic control less than an hour after take-off, at a point over the South China Sea.It was crewed by 12 Malaysians and carried 38 Malaysian passengers.

The flight was declared officially missing on January 29, and all passengers and crew members are presumed dead. No trace of the plane has been found despite the largest search operation in aviation history.The search area now covers 120,000sqkm, a doubling of the original area after a year of fruitless searching at the first anniversary of the aircrafts disappearance earlier this year.The JACC said that more the 50,000sqkm of the seafloor has been covered to date. – June 18, 2015.


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