The Australian Government has confirmed that debris recovered from Mozambique is highly likely to have come from MH370. The Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester today advised the examination of the two pieces of debris has been completed.
The Malaysian Investigation Team for MH370 has found that both pieces of debris are consistent with panels from a Malaysia Airlines B777 aircraft. The two pieces of debris were found separately by members of the public and were flown to Australia for analysis.
“The analysis has concluded the debris is almost certainly from MH370,” Chester said. “That such debris has been found on the east coast of Africa is consistent with drift modelling performed by CSIRO and further affirms our search efforts in the southern Indian Ocean.
“I would like to acknowledge the work undertaken by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, Geoscience Australia, Boeing and Australian National University which assisted the Malaysian Investigation Team with their examination of the debris,” he said
“The search for MH370 continues. There are 25,000 square kilometres of the underwater search area still to be searched. We are focused on completing this task and remain hopeful the aircraft will be found.”
Meanwhile a new piece of debris found on a beach in South Africa on Monday will be analysed to see if it belongs to MH370. Malaysia said it would send a team to retrieve the possible piece of aircraft engine inlet cowling bearing the logo of Rolls Royce, which made the engines for the missing B777 aircraft, which was found near Mossel Bay, a small town in Western Cape province on the southern coast.
The South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) said in a statement: “The necessary arrangements are under way for the evaluation and collection of the part, which, if it indeed belongs to an aircraft, will then be handed over to Malaysian authorities.”
The Malaysian transport minister, Liow Tiong Lai, said: “Based on early reports there is a possibility of the piece originating from an inlet cowling of an aircraft engine.” A further examination and analysis were needed, he said.
MH370 vanished in March 2014 with 239 people on board while flying from the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur to Beijing and is widely believed to have gone down in the Indian Ocean after veering off course. The fate of the aircraft, its passengers and crew remains one of aviation’s biggest unsolved mysteries.
The three countries involved in the search – Malaysia, China and Australia – have said that barring significant new evidence, they will end the operation once the area has been fully searched. The search is expected to be completed in the coming months.