|(Flight MH370) Australia says nothing found, now looking out of plane windows with naked eyes
Australia said today radar had failed to detect any sign of a missing Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 and authorities are switching to skilled observers to look for debris in the remote southern Indian Ocean. So far, Australia has drawn a blank, officials said today.
Earlier, Australia's Prime Minister had announced in Parliament the sighting of two large objects based on satellite imagery. They had not been verified before the announcement. Abbott said today they could be shipping containers.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority is searching for Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 in the region between Australia and Antarctica, in an area 2,500 kilometers southwest of Perth.
“Noting that we got no radar detections yesterday, we have replanned the search to be visual,'' the head of ASMA's emergency response division John Young (Pictured) said.
“So the aircraft flying relatively low, very highly trained and skilled observers looking out of the aircraft windows, and looking to see objects.''
That meant the search aircraft would have to fly more closely together, Young said, adding, “we will need more aircraft for a search of that type.’’
Five planes were in the air today – three Australian RAAF P3 Orions, one long-range corporate jet and a United States Navy P8 Poseidon.
Young said the weather was suitable for searching, but officials have so far drawn a blank in finding anything from the plane.
“We have no sighting yet,'' Young said.
Australia has gradually reduced the search area.
“Although this search area is much smaller than we started with it nonetheless is a big area when you are looking out the window and trying to see something by eye,'' Young said.
“So we may have to do this a few times to be confident about the coverage of that search area.''
Young said authorities planned a similar search for Saturday, only moving the target area to take into account the movement of any objects due to sea currents.
“These satellite image detections provide us with a good lead, as I said yesterday, it also correlates with the work that was done by the US National Transportation Safety Board [on the plane's flight path] and that gives a great degree of confidence in what it is that we're doing,'' he said.
“We remain focused on finding people alive, if they are to be found, and that's tomorrow's game.''—AFP