Person who found debris did not link to MH370
ALEISHA ORR AND TASHA CAMPBELL
The person who came across an object, which is now being analysed to see if it is debris from Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, may not have initially realised there was a possibility it could be a significant find.
News of the discovery of debris on a beach on West Australia's south-west coast filtered out on Wednesday night but the person who found the object or objects, which are yet to be identified as having anything to do with the doomed plane, had found them a day or two earlier.
While there have been reports of multiple items, the officer in charge at the local police station who spoke to the Busselton-Dunsborough Mail spoke of just one object.
Senior Sergeant Steve Principe said the person who found the object initially held on to it for "a day or two" before taking it to the Busselton Regional Airport for inspection.
Senior Sergeant Principe confirmed that the item that washed up on a beach at Scott River near Augusta, about 320 kilometres south of Perth, was eight feet (2.44 metres) tall, half a metre wide and was an "alloy type of metal".
He also said the object did not have any identifiable writing on it.
A statement from the Joint Agency Coordination Centre, the Australian government agency responsible for organising the search effort, issued on Wednesday evening said the Australian Transport Safety Bureau was examining photographs of the material.
Staff from the ATSB are working to determine "whether further physical analysis is required and if there is any relevance to the search of missing flight MH370."
The ATSB has also provided the photographs to the Malaysian investigation team.
The item or items had been in police custody in Busselton but were expected to be handed over to the ATSB on Wednesday night or Thursday morning.
The area where the item was found is about 100 kilometres south of the current search zone; closer to the initial search zone that was identified in the Indian Ocean.
Flight MH370 disappeared on March 8 with 239 passengers on board.
- WA Today
Subscribe to a digital replica of The Southland Times.
Southland Times subscriber news and information.
Click here for information about advertising with The Southland Times.