ATSB releases final report on missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) has released its final report on the investigation into the Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 that went missing on 8 March 2014 with 12 crew members and 227 passengers on-board.
Entitled 'The Operational Search for MH370', the report includes details of the 1,046-day search operation for the missing Boeing 777, as well as Australia’s contribution to the underwater search to find the aircraft.
The Governments of Malaysia, China and Australia discontinued an A$200m ($160m) hunt on 17 January after being unable to discover the whereabouts of the missing plane, reported Reuters.
The underwater search was led by Australia.
In its final report, ATSB said: "it is almost inconceivable and certainly societally unacceptable in the modern aviation era with ten million passengers boarding commercial aircraft every day, for a large commercial aircraft to be missing and for the world not to know with certainty what became of the aircraft and those on-board."
The missing Malaysia Airlines aircraft was lost during its flight from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to Beijing, China.
It is believed to have been side-tracked thousands of kilometres off course out over the southern Indian Ocean before breaking down on the coast of Western Australia.
Australia’s main scientific agency previously claimed in August that the plane crashed north-east of the search zone marked by the concerned investigative authorities.
However, the agency’s claims were later dismissed by the Australian Government, citing a lack of specific proof.
The final ATSB report further added: “The understanding of where MH370 may be located is better now than it has ever been.
“The underwater search has eliminated most of the high probability areas.”
ATSB's report also suggests that aircraft and aircraft equipment manufacturers should develop improved automated satellite tracking methods for planes in response to the incident.
Additionally, the Government of Malaysia has been continuing its investigation to find the plane’s location and received a proposal from private seabed exploration firm Ocean Infinity in August to restart the search.