News / Asia

Malaysian Plane Search Shifts to New Area

An Australian Air Force C-17 taxis at the RAAF Base Pearce near Perth, March 28, 2014. The C-17 delivered an Australian Navy SeaHawk helicopter which will be used in the search for Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean.
An Australian Air Force C-17 taxis at the RAAF Base Pearce near Perth, March 28, 2014. The C-17 delivered an Australian Navy SeaHawk helicopter which will be used in the search for Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean.
Ron Corben
Nearly three weeks after the ill-fated Malaysian jet, MH370, disappeared off radar, Australian authorities say new analysis of in flight satellite data has led them to move the search area some 1,100 kilometers to the northeast in the Indian Ocean.  Australian search planes have spotted objects in area.
 
Australian authorities say the international team analyzing the data sent by the Boeing 777 in mid flight found that the plane was traveling faster than previously estimated and so likely ran out of fuel sooner.
 
As a result, authorities decided to abandon the area that planes and ships had been methodically searching for days.

“The Australian authorities have indicated that they have shifted the search area approximately 1,100 kilometers to the northeast," Malaysian Defense Minister Hishamuddin Hussein told reporters in Kuala Lumpur. "Because of ocean drift, this new search area could still be consistent with the potential objects identified by various satellites images over the past week.”
 
Debris spotted
 
In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.
x
In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.
In this Thaichote satellite taken on March 24, 2014 (released March 27, 2014) a part of about 300 objects floating in the Indian Ocean near the search area for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner are shown.
Several satellites have spotted debris floating on the open ocean that may have been from the flight, but so far searchers have not recovered any physical evidence of the plane.
 
Martin Dolan, Chief Commissioner of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, said while the new information represents a "credible lead” in the search for the missing aircraft, he remains cautious.  
 
"The information provided by the international investigative team is the most credible lead we currently have in the search for aircraft wreckage. However, this information needs to be continually adjusted for the length of time elapsed as the aircraft went missing and the likely drift of any wreckage floating on the ocean surface," Dolan said.
 
Mysterious disappearance

It is still unknown why the Boeing 777 aircraft, on a routine flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, with 239 passengers and crew on-board, veered west after its flight transponder stopped transmitting.
 

Watch Related Story: Maryland Firm Assists in Black Box Search

x
Maryland Company Sends Locator to Plane Searchi
X
March 28, 2014 2:24 AM
Experts say no one will really know what happened to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 until the black box - the flight recorder - is retrieved. Time is running out because that flight recorder only emits an audible signal - a ping - for 30 days. The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its “pinger locators” to the Indian Ocean. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti reports.

Watch Related Story: Maryland Firm Assists in Black Box Search

The new analysis places a possible crash site in a region of some 319,000 square kilometers. The location is closer to Perth, where search planes are based, meaning they should be able to spend more time combing the search area instead of traveling to and from it.
 
John Young, a manager with the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, says the new area will hopefully have better weather conditions. 
 
"I'm not sure that we'll get perfect weather out there but it's likely to be better more often than we have seen in the past and we see what that does in terms of satellite imagery when the re-tasking of satellites starts to produce new material," Young said.

Australia's Geospatial-Intelligence Organization (AGO) is to re-task satellites to capture images of the new area.
 
After search efforts were hampered by poor weather a day earlier, 10 aircraft from Australia, China, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, and the United States were covering the new region on Friday.
 
  • The Bluefin 21, the Artemis autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), is hoisted back on board the Australian Defence Vessel Ocean Shield after a successful buoyancy test in the southern Indian Ocean as part of the continuing search for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, April 4, 2014.
  • Flight Lieutenant Stephen Graham monitors a TAC station onboard a Royal New Zealand Air Force P3 Orion during search operations for wreckage and debris of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean, near the coast of Western Australia, April 4, 2014.
  • Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force Commander Hidetsugu Iwamasa speaks to the press in front of one of their P-3C Orion aircraft currently at RAAF Base Pearce near Perth, Australia, April 4, 2014.
  • Relatives of Chinese passengers on board the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 pray in a prayer room, Beijing, China, April 4, 2014.
  • Australia's Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak tour RAAF Base Pearce, near Perth, April 3, 2014.
  • Steve Wang a representative from the committee for relatives of Chinese passengers onboard Flight MH370 talks to journalists after a closed door meeting with Malaysian officials via teleconference in Beijing, April 2, 2014.
  • A crew member sits in the cockpit of a Royal New Zealand Air Force patrol aircraft as it continues searching in the southern Indian Ocean for Flight MH370, April 1, 2014.
  • Koji Kubota of the Japan Coast Guard keeps watch while flying in the search zone for debris from Flight MH370, April 1, 2014.
  • A Buddhist monk welcomes Chinese relatives of passengers on Flight MH370 as they arrive to pray at a Buddhist temple in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, March 31, 2014.
  • Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott addresses the international forces currently based in Perth searching for Flight MH370 during his visit to RAAF Base Pearce, March 31, 2014.

Vessels from several of the search nations' navies have also been scouring the seas in the hope of uncovering identifiable debris.
 
x
Payouts begin
 
Although no wreckage has yet been found, echoing comments from Malaysia that the plane had definitely crashed and there was no hope of survivors being found, Chinese insurance companies started to pay compensation to the families of passengers aboard the plane.
          
China Life, the country's largest insurance company, has provided the families of seven passengers with a total compensation of 4.17 million yuan ($671,600), Chen Honghao, an official from China Life's department of planning, told Reuters by telephone on Friday.
          
Other insurers, including China Pacific, Sunshine Insurance and New China Life have also begun to pay out claims, representative from those companies confirmed.    

Some information in this report contributed by Reuters.
Error rendering storify.

You May Like

Video British Fighters on Frontline of Islamic State Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Pakistan's Political Turmoil Again Shines Spotlight on Military

Thousands of protesters calling for PM Sharif to step down continue protests in front of parliament, as critics fear political impasse could spur another military coup More

Photogallery Ebola Quarantines Spark Anxiety in Liberian Capital

Food prices rise sharply as residents attempting purchases clash with security forces, leaving one person dead More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid