Flight 370 Search Zone Widens After 5 Days Without Pings
It has been more than five days since searchers looking for the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner detected any pings from what was believed to be the emergency beacons and authorities announced an expansion in the search area.
In a message similar to the prior day’s, the Joint Agency Coordination Center said, “There have been no confirmed acoustic detections over the past 24 hours.”
The authority said that the visual search area on Sunday, to be centered 2,200 kilometers (1,367 miles) [JDS1] north west of Perth, Australia, will cover an area of 57,506 square kilometers (22,203 square miles). This compares to Saturday’s search area of 41,393 square kilometers (15,981 square miles).
“Today’s visual search area is a continuation of the systematic search for floating debris derived from the probable area determined by the international investigation team and the area of acoustic event detections,” said the Joint Agency Coordination Center in a statement. “The daily visual search areas will vary in size according to factors such as oceanic drift and weather information optimized for aircraft search operations.”
Aircraft and ships involved in the search have continued to spot and recover objects, but, according to a statement from the Joint Agency Coordination Center on Saturday, “none of the recovered items were confirmed to be associated with MH370.”
Despite the lack of progress, Australian officials continued to exude confidence about locating the Boeing 777’s final resting place. On Saturday, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said investigators still have a “high degree” of confidence that the signals detected early last week were from Flight 370, but he added that the search would likely continue “for a long time to come” given the difficult conditions in the region.
(Map: Joint Agency Coordination Center)