The disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 was ‘almost inconceivable and certainly societally unacceptable,’ the Australian investigation unit that conducted the search said Tuesday.
The Boeing 777 flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing went missing with 239 passengers and crew on board on March 8, 2014, and is presumed to have crashed into the sea.
The search, conducted by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau along with Malaysia and China, was called of in January after 1.046 days.
The bureau published its final 440-page search report on Tuesday.
‘We deeply regret that we have not been able to locate the aircraft, nor those 239 souls on board that remain missing,’ it said.
‘It is almost inconceivable and certainly societally unacceptable in the modern aviation era with 10 million passengers boarding commercial aircraft every day, for a large commercial aircraft to be missing and for the world not to know with certainty what became of the aircraft and those on board.’ The bureau conducted an underwater search with hydrographic mapping of 710,000 square kilometres of Indian Ocean seafloor, followed by a high-resolution sonar search covering an area of more than 120,000 square kilometres.
Both were the largest ever searches conducted in aviation history.
The underwater search was also the most expensive - the three countries spent some 150 million US dollars.
‘Despite the extraordinary efforts of hundreds of people involved in the search from around the world, the aircraft has not been located,’ the report said.
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