Ongoing search and retrieval operations for the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 get halted due to severe weather conditions, latest official update revealed.
A weekly update from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau came Wednesday stating that they have decided to suspend their mission after weather conditions in the area worsened.
“Recent poor weather conditions have severely impacted search operations; the last four weeks saw no search operations undertaken,” the bureau explained in the statement. “It is now anticipated it may take until around August to complete the 120,000 square kilometers, but this will be influenced by weather conditions over the coming months, which may worsen.”
The Australians are in charge of leading underwater missions, and with winter drawing near in the Southern hemisphere, climate conditions have become more difficult to gauge especially out in the seas. The decision came in a week after the search team was met with technological difficulties. This is on top of the increased danger posed to the crew aboard sea vessels that rummage areas where the debris of the missing airplane can supposedly be found. Two ships that are involved in the search were recently docked on standby for three weeks due to bad weather and the forecast says that it may continue to be that way for quite some time. This effectively delays the process from an original target end date this month to August or even later.
Despite field work suspension, the Australian squad promised that work will continue on other aspects of the investigation. These include in-lab testing and study of previously collected debris.
“Our work will continue to be thorough and methodical, so sometimes weekly progress may seem slow. Please be assured that work is continuing and is aimed at finding MH370 as quickly as possible,” the update added.
The ill-fated MH370 international flight from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to Beijing, China disappeared two years ago on March 8, 2014. The incident still remains to be shrouded in mystery with the definite cause of the crash still unknown.