The seabed searches for the missing Malaysian airliner; MH370 has been left to a single ship, with a Chinese vessel heading home to Shanghai. The ill-fated flight MH370 took off from Kuala Lumpur International Airport enroute Beijing International Airport on March 8, 2014 and disappeared from radar.
A Dutch survey ship Fugro Equator will finish the search of the southern Indian Ocean for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 alone after resupplying at the southwest Australian port of Fremantle, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), which coordinates the search.
The ATSB is leading the underwater search for MH370 in the southern Indian Ocean. Australia has accepted the responsibility on request from the Malaysian Government.
The Chinese ship Dong Hai Jiu 101 had finished searching the 120,000-square-kilometer (46,000-square-mile) expanse last weekend and headed back to Fremantle to drop off equipment before returning to its home port of Shanghai, on December 3.
The Chinese ship in February joined three search vessels operated by the Dutch underwater survey company Fugro in the hunt for the Boeing 777 that authorities say crashed with 239 people aboard far off the southwest coast of Australia on March 8, 2014.
Fugro Equator’s missions in the remaining parts of the 120,000 square-kilometre search area are expected to be completed in January/February 2017. The ship is using a highly maneuverable drone known as an autonomous underwater vehicle to get sonar images of difficult terrain.