World
Australia says cost not a concern as mini-sub fails to locate MH370
Publish Date: Apr 23, 2014
Australia says cost not a concern as mini-sub fails to locate MH370
The latest technology has been used but no sign yet of the missing plane. AFP file photo
  • mail
  • img
newvision

PERTH - Australia said Wednesday cost was not a concern in the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, after the mini-sub plumbing the depths of the Indian Ocean for wreckage ended its ninth mission empty-handed.
 
Australia is leading the multinational search for the Boeing 777 which vanished on March 8 carrying 239 people, and is bearing many of the costs of the mission expected to be the most expensive in aviation history.
 
"There will be some issues of costs into the future but this is not about costs," Defence Minister David Johnston told reporters in Canberra.
 
"We want to find this aircraft. We want to say to our friends in Malaysia and China this is not about cost, we are concerned to be seen to be helping them in a most tragic circumstance."
 
China, whose citizens made up two-thirds of the passengers onboard the ill-fated flight, and Malaysia are among eight countries including Australia which have committed assets to the Indian Ocean search.
 
But with no confirmed sightings of debris from the flight on the surface so far, the search moved underwater nearly two weeks ago.
 
Australia's Joint Agency Coordination Centre, which is fronting the search, said Wednesday the device looking for the plane on the seabed had scanned some 80 percent of its target zone without result.
 
The torpedo-shaped autonomous underwater vehicle called a Bluefin-21 is on mission 10 in the underwater search area, JACC said.
 
"Bluefin-21 has now completed more than 80 percent of the focused underwater search area.
 
"No contacts of interest have been found to date."
 
The device is searching an area at least 4,500 metres (15,000 feet) deep defined by a 10-kilometre (six-mile) radius around a detection of a signal believed to be from the plane's black box heard on April 8.
 
A visual surface search involving up to 10 military aircraft and 12 ships was also planned for Wednesday, despite suggestions last week that this aspect would be scaled down in coming days.
 
The visual hunt would cover an area totalling about 37,948 square kilometres (14,650 square miles) some 855 kilometres (530 miles) northwest of Perth, JACC said.
 
Johnston said Australia was tracking the cost of the mission, and if the Bluefin-21 failed to spot wreckage the search would move into a new phase, but said Canberra was committed to the task.
 
"We move to the next phase which is a more intensive single sideband sonar type programme, I suspect, but let's take advice of the experts as to where we go forward," he said.
 
"But the enthusiasm, the dedication and commitment to doing what we've been doing has not waned, we are still out there, we're still flying, we're still on the surface, in our ships. We are still looking."
 
Johnston said Australia was talking with its partners about the assets needed for the next phase of the search for the plane which mysteriously diverted en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
 
"We are working that up now in consultation with our friends," he said.
 
AFP

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Boko Haram
Boko Haram has kidnapped at least 185 people, including women and children, in northeast Nigeria, the latest mass abduction in a region where the military has repeatedly struggled to protect civilians, officials and witnesses said Thursday....
Village votes to expel HIV-positive boy
The plight of a Chinese boy with the HIV virus, reportedly pushed to leave his home by 200 villagers who signed a petition...
Key points in Obama
Among the changes, Obama will authorize the State Department to re-establish full diplomatic relations with Cuba....
Global life expectancy rises - study
People around the world lived on average to a ripe old age of 71.5 in 2013, up from 65.3 in 1990, a study says....
US announces
The United States on Wednesday announced a "historic" thaw in relations with Cuba, saying it would work to re-establish diplomatic ties with Havana and ease long-standing trade and travel sanctions....
Jeb latest Bush to launch US presidential bid
JEB Bush, son to one former US president and brother to another, threw his hat into the ring for the 2016 race...
What is causing the rise in Early child marriages?
Decaying social structures
Poor Education
None of the above
follow us
subscribe to our news letter