Malaysia hires USA firm to resume search for missing MH370

Casey Dawson
January 11, 2018

"Ocean Infinity will undertake search operation to locate flight MH370 an area of 25,000 square kilometers.The search operation is scheduled to commence in mid-January 2018", said Malaysia's Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai at a press conference, Efe reported. On Wednesday, the Malaysian government was scheduled to sign a deal detailing the terms of payment that will be given to Ocean Infinity if the missing jet is found.

"The company should also be able to present a considerable and credible evidence to confirm the exact location of the two main items", he said at the MH370 search operations signing ceremony between the Malaysian government and U.S. firm Ocean Infinity Limited here.

Norwegian research vessel Seabed Constructor, which is being leased by Ocean Infinity for the hunt, has set off from South Africa and is aiming to arrive in the search area by Jan 17, the firm's CEO Oliver Plunkett told reporters.

A USA exploration firm was mandated by the Malaysian government on Wednesday to resume search for the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 aircraft, possibly the last attempt to solve one of the biggest mysteries in aviation history.

Underwater wreck hunter David Mearns said the new search takes into account oceanographic models used to drastically narrow the possible locations of the crash and deploys state-of-the art underwater vehicles that will allow the company to cover far more seabed at a faster pace.

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"That means they are willing to search the area of 25,000 square kilometers pointed out by the expert group near the Australian waters", he said.

He said the MH370 response team will be headed by Civil Aviation director-general Datuk Seri Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, along with officials from the ministry, Foreign Affairs Ministry, and Communications and Multimedia Ministry. If we don't find it within the said area, we can carry on looking for it within the agreed timeframe.

After almost three years of combing 120,000 sq km of ocean floor without success, the Malaysian, Chinese and Australian governments in January last year made a decision to suspend the search until "credible new information" becomes available.

The Boeing 777 vanished from radar less than 40 minutes after taking off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport just after midnight on March 8, 2014, heading to Beijing with 239 people on board.

No sign of the plane was found in the search zone selected by satellite analysis of the flight's projected trajectory.

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