Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 disappeared from radar exactly one year ago, but a new report shows that the hopes of finding the lost airplane may have been destroyed long before that.
The first comprehensive report of the airplane’s disappearance was released coinciding with the one-year anniversary of its disappearance, revealing that the battery on the plane’s locator beacon had expired more than a year before it presumably crashed in the Indian Ocean.
The search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 has gone on for the past year, but not yet turned up any trace of the plane. In late January, the Malaysian government formally declared the plane lost, saying that all 239 people on board were killed.
Search crews may have still had a chance to find the missing plane. The report noted that the battery in the locator beacon of the cockpit voice recording was still in functioning order.
The report also shied away from assigning blame for the crash or the failure to find the plane.
“The sole objective of the investigation is the prevention of future accidents or incidents, and not for the purpose to apportion blame or liability,” the report said.
As the Associated Press noted, the report itself was extensive though not particularly groundbreaking.
“The 584-page report by a 19-member independent investigation group went into minute details about the crew’s lives, including their medical and financial records and training. It also detailed the aircraft’s service record, as well as the weather, communications systems and other aspects of the flight. Nothing unusual was revealed, except for the previously undisclosed fact of the battery’s expiration date.”
Despite one year passing with no sign of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, officials remain confident that they will be able to find the final resting site of the plane. Retired Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, who was in charge of the initial search, said he never expected it to be a short process.
“From the outset, I expected the search for MH370 to be long and drawn out, so I am not surprised that the search continues as we approach the first anniversary of the disappearance of MH370,” Houston told Malay Mail Online in a recent email interview.
Angus said that search crews have now gone through a little more than 40 percent of what was deemed the “high-priority area,” noting that he believes chances of finding Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 are still good.
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