MH370 families await report as search ends for missing plane
After four years, the loved ones of those who were on the Malaysia Airlines flight hope that the report will contain key information.VIDEO INSIDE
Flight MH370, carrying 239 people, vanished enroute from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014, becoming one of the worldâs greatest aviation mysteries. (Reuters pic)
KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysiaâs new government has promised to release a long-awaited report into the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 as a privately funded underwater search effort ended today.
Flight MH370, carrying 239 people, vanished enroute from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014, becoming one of the worldâs greatest aviation mysteries.
The government of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said last week that US seabed exploration firm Ocean Infinity, which had scoured the southern Indian Ocean for the aircraft since January, would end its hunt on Tuesday.
The previous administration of Najib Razak, who was defeated in a stunning election upset on May 9, had promised up to US$70 million (about RM280 million) to the Texas-based firm if it found the plane within 90 days.
Transport Minister Anthony Loke said a full report into MH370âs disappearance would be published in the near future, but he did not give a date.
âI can assure you the final report will be published with full disclosure. There will not be any edits, or anything hidden,â he told reporters yesterday.
Asked whether the report would refer to controversial elements of the MH370 case, he said: âTo me, whatever elements, we will just publish it.â
Last year, Australian authorities said the MH370 captain had flown a route on his home simulator six weeks before the disappearance that was âinitially similarâ to t he course actually taken by the aircraft.
Peter Foley, who led the Australian Transport Safety Bureauâs search efforts, told an Australian Senate hearing âcontrol inputsâ had been made to fly the airliner off course, but he could not say if one of the pilots had done so.
Malaysian investigators said in 2015 they had found nothing suspicious in the financial, medical or personal histories of the pilots or crew.
Families call for review
The decision to engage Ocean Infinity came after Australia, China and Malaysia ended a fruitless A$200-million (about RM600 million) search across a 120,000 square-kilometre expanse of the Indian Ocean last year.
This was despite investigators calling for the target area to be extended north by 25,000 square kilometres.
Ocean Infinity CEO Oliver Plunkett said today that their team had searched more than 112,000 square kilometres of ocean floor in a little over three months.
While t he outcome was âextremely disappointingâ, Plunkett hoped the company would be able to offer its services again in a future search for the airliner.
Voice 370, a group representing the relatives of those aboard the flight, has pressed the new government to review all matters related to MH370, including âany possible falsification or elimination of records related to MH370 and its maintenanceâ.
Calvin Shim, whose wife was a crew member on the plane, said he was concerned that the accident report would not include key information such as the planeâs full cargo manifest and the results of a separate investigation by Malaysian police.
âWe know that this issue is already four years old and a lot of people involved want closure,â he said.
âThese four years have not been fun to us, the families.â
Australiaâs Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said the search had tested the limits of technology and capacity of experts and people at sea.
It would only resume if there was âcredible evidence which identifies a specific location of the missing aircraftâ.
âWe will always remain hopeful that one day the aircraft will be located,â McCormackâs office said in a statement.
Source: Google News