Malaysia Airlines MH370 Investigation Report Delayed

A full official account of the investigation will be released once the current search efforts conclude.

Malaysia MH370
The Seabed Constructor deploys autonomous water vessels to search the ocean floor.Swire Seabed

Four years to the day after Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, a Boeing 777 carrying 239 people from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, mysteriously disappeared from radar, officials announced that the full report on the investigation has been suspended until the current search effort has concluded. U.S.-based Ocean Infinity Limited began the search in late January after the company was promised $70 million by the Malaysian government if the wreckage was found.

If the search is not fruitful, the payout for the effort will be zero. The search efforts are scheduled to conclude in mid-June. However, “In the event that the aircraft is found, the team will conduct further investigation,” Malaysian investigators said in a statement obtained by Reuters. In that case, Malaysian and Australian governments would head up the recovery effort.

Ocean Infinity is capable of surveying about 425 square miles per day using the Seabed Constructor, owned by the Norwegian company Swire Seabed. The vessel is being supported by the MV Maersk Mariner, and several autonomous underwater vehicles are being used to scan the ocean floor. Positioning of the AUV is guided by unmanned surface vehicles. As of March 4, Ocean Infinity announced it has searched an area of about 6,200 square miles within the new target zone, located north of the area previously searched. The latest weekly operational search update reported “No significant contacts identified to date.”

A three-year effort by the Malaysian, Chinese and Australian governments, in which nearly $160 million was spent searching 46,000 square miles, produced no results. That search effort concluded in January of last year.