CNN Exclusive: Australia transport safety chief tells what’s next in MH370 search
David Molko, CNN
4 minute read
1:34 PM EDT, Tue April 22, 2014
Two years after Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 went missing, a relative of one of the passengers burns incense in Beijing on March 8, 2016. Flight 370 vanished on March 8, 2014, as it flew from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to Beijing. There were 239 people on board.
Visual China Group/Getty Images
On July 29, police carry a piece of debris on Reunion Island, a French territory in the Indian Ocean. A week later, authorities confirmed that the debris was from the missing flight.
Staff members with the Australian Transport Safety Bureau examine a piece of aircraft debris at their laboratory in Canberra, Australia, on July 20. The flap was found in June by residents on Pemba Island off the coast of Tanzania, and officials had said it was highly likely to have come from Flight 370. Experts at the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, which is heading up the search for the plane, confirmed that the part was indeed from the missing aircraft.
In late February, American tourist Blaine Gibson found a piece of plane debris off Mozambique, a discovery that renewed hope of solving the mystery of the missing flight. The piece measured 35 inches by 22 inches. A U.S. official said it was likely the wreckage came from a Boeing 777, which MH370 was.
Relatives of the flight's passengers console each other outside the Malaysia Airlines office in Subang, Malaysia, on February 12, 2015. Protesters had demanded that the airline withdraw the statement that all 239 people aboard the plane were dead.
MANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP/Getty Images
A police officer watches a couple cry outside the airline's office building in Beijing after officials refused to meet with them on June 11, 2014. The couple's son was on the plane.
Members of the media scramble to speak with Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, director general of Malaysia's Civil Aviation Department, at a hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on May 27, 2014. Data from communications between satellites and the missing flight was released the day before, more than two months after relatives of passengers said they requested it be made public.
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Operators aboard the Australian ship Ocean Shield move Bluefin-21, the U.S. Navy's autonomous underwater vehicle, into position to search for the jet on April 14, 2014.
Peter D. Blair/U.S. Navy/UPI/LANDOV
A member of the Royal New Zealand Air Force looks out of a window while searching for debris off the coast of western Australia on April 13, 2014.
The HMS Echo, a vessel with the British Roya; Navy, moves through the waters of the southern Indian Ocean on April 12, 2014.
British Ministry of Defence
A Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orion, on a mission to drop sonar buoys to assist in the search, flies past the Australian vessel Ocean Shield on April 9, 2014.
LSIS Bradley Darvill/Australian Defense Force/AP
A relative of a missing passenger cries at a vigil in Beijing on April 8, 2014.
Australian Defense Force divers scan the water for debris in the southern Indian Ocean on April 7, 2014.
Lt. Ryan Davis/Australian Defense Force/AP
A towed pinger locator is readied to be deployed off the deck of the Australian vessel Ocean Shield on April 7, 2014.
Kelly Hunt/Australian Defense Force/UPI/LANDOV
A member of the Royal New Zealand Air Force looks at a flare in the Indian Ocean during search operations on April 4, 2014.
Nick Perry/Pool/Getty Images
On March 30, 2014, a woman in Kuala Lumpur prepares for an event in honor of those aboard Flight 370.
Rahman Roslan/Getty Images
The sole representative for the families of Flight 370 passengers leaves a conference at a Beijing hotel on March 28, 2014, after other relatives left en masse to protest the Malaysian government's response to their questions.
Ng Han Guan/AP
A member of the Royal Australian Air Force is silhouetted against the southern Indian Ocean during the search for the missing jet on March 27, 2014.
Michael Martina/Pool/Getty Images
Flight Lt. Jayson Nichols looks at a map aboard a Royal Australian Air Force aircraft during a search on March 27, 2014.
People in Kuala Lumpur light candles during a ceremony held for the missing flight's passengers on March 27, 2014.
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, center, delivers a statement about the flight on March 24, 2014. Razak's announcement came after the airline sent a text message to relatives saying it "deeply regrets that we have to assume beyond any reasonable doubt that MH 370 has been lost and that none of those onboard survived."
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Grieving relatives of missing passengers leave a hotel in Beijing on March 24, 2014.
GOH CHAI HIN/AFP/Getty Images
A passenger views a weather map in the departures terminal of Kuala Lumpur International Airport on March 22, 2014.
Rufus Cox/Getty Images
A Chinese satellite captured this image, released on March 22, 2014, of a floating object in the Indian Ocean, according to China's State Administration of Science. It was a possible lead in the search for the missing plane. Surveillance planes were looking for two objects spotted by satellite imagery in remote, treacherous waters more than 1,400 miles from the west coast of Australia.
China's State Admiration of Science
Satellite imagery provided by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority on March 20, 2014, showed debris in the southern Indian Ocean that could have been from Flight 370. The announcement by Australian officials raised hopes of a breakthrough in the frustrating search.
Digital Globe/AMSA/Getty Images
Another satellite shot provided by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority shows possible debris from the flight.
DigitalGlobe/AMSA via Getty Images
A distraught relative of a missing passenger breaks down while talking to reporters at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on March 19, 2014.
On March 18, 2014, a relative of a missing passenger tells reporters in Beijing about a hunger strike to protest authorities' handling of information about the missing jet.
U.S. Navy crew members assist in search-and-rescue operations in the Indian Ocean on March 16, 2014.
U.S. Navy/Eric A. Pastor/AP
Members of the Chinese navy continue search operations on March 13, 2014. After starting in the sea between Malaysia and Vietnam, the plane's last confirmed location, search efforts expanded west into the Indian Ocean.
A Vietnamese military official looks out an aircraft window during search operations March 13, 2014.
LUONG THAI LINH/EPA/LANDOV
Malaysian air force members look for debris near Kuala Lumpur on March 13, 2014.
Rahman Roslan/Getty Images
Relatives of missing passengers wait for the latest news at a hotel in Beijing on March 12, 2014.
A member of the Vietnamese air force checks a map while searching for the missing plane on March 11, 2014.
HOANG DINH NAM/AFP/Getty Images
A Vietnamese air force plane found traces of oil that authorities had suspected to be from the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, the Vietnamese government online newspaper reported on March 8, 2014. However, a sample from the slick showed it was bunker oil, typically used to power large cargo ships, Malaysia's state news agency, Bernama, reported on March 10, 2014.
A U.S. Navy Seahawk helicopter lands aboard the USS Pinckney to change crews on March 9, 2014, before returning to search for the missing plane in the Gulf of Thailand.
Chris D. Boardman/U.S. Navy via Getty Images
Buddhist monks at Kuala Lumpur International Airport offer a special prayer for the missing passengers on March 9, 2014.
Lai Seng Sin/AP
Members of a Chinese emergency response team board a rescue vessel at the port of Sanya in China's Hainan province on March 9, 2014.
The rescue vessel sets out from Sanya in the South China Sea on March 9, 2014.