Flotilla search for missing plane

Last updated 12:29 04/04/2014
Search for MH370
Australia is leading a search of the southern Indian Ocean for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet. | Click here for full-size graphic

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The search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 in the Indian Ocean will involve up to 14 planes and nine ships, the Australian government's Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) says.

JACC said the search for the downed jet would focus on a vast area of about 217,000 square kilometres, about 1700 kilometres northwest of Perth.

It said the search would focus on "three areas within the same vicinity".

JACC said 26 State Emergency Service (SES) volunteers would work as observers on three of the civil aircraft, and the other civil plane would act as a communications relay.

Fair weather is forecast for the search area today, with visibility around 10 kilometres and a cloud base between 1000 and 2000 feet (300 to 600 metres), JACC said.

The search resumes after Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott met with Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak on Thursday and said authorities can't be certain of success in the search for MH370.

The initial search focused on the South China Sea.

After subsequent searches in the Strait of Malacca, Andaman Sea and northern Indian Ocean, the focus turned to the southern Indian Ocean, based on satellite data.

Hundreds of objects have been spotted in the remote search area but so far none have been verified as the plane's wreckage.

The flight disappeared on March 8 while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

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