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Malaysian Airlines MH370 search ends leaving mystery unsolved

Donna Coutts, May 31, 2018 8:28AM Kids News

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Leading Seaman, Boatswain's Mate, William Sharkey searching for debris near HMAS Perth in April 2014 in the Indian Ocean. Picture: AFP media_cameraLeading Seaman, Boatswain's Mate, William Sharkey searching for debris near HMAS Perth in April 2014 in the Indian Ocean. Picture: AFP

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A report into missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 has been released, confirming that someone deliberately took the plane off course before it disappeared.

The report also explains that all four of the plane’s emergency locator transmitters failed and no nearby planes or searchers received a distress signal.

The Malaysian government release the report this week on all the known information about the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.

The search for the missing plane ended in May, leaving one of aviation’s* greatest mysteries unsolved.

The plane vanished* on its way from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to Beijing, China, more than four years ago on March 8, 2014. There were 239 people on board, including six Australians.

The only confirmed* traces* of the plane have been three wing pieces found washed up on the eastern African coast and nearby islands in the Indian Ocean.

Independent MH370 investigator Blaine Alan Gibson with debris discovered on Riake Beach, Madagascar. Picture: Facebook media_cameraIndependent MH370 investigator Blaine Alan Gibson with debris discovered on Riake Beach, Madagascar. Picture: Facebook

Australia, China and Malaysia ended the first search of 120,000 square kilometres of the Indian Ocean last year, which cost $200 million and continued for two-and-a-half years.

The second search, by US seabed exploration company Ocean Infinity, ended in late May after 90 days. The company took over after the initial* search on a no-find, no-fee basis*.

Ocean Infinity searched more than 112,000 square kilometres of the ocean floor without finding the plane.

The previous Malaysian government (which lost the election on May 9) had promised to pay Ocean Infinity up to $93 million if it found the plane within 90 days.

“Part of our motivation* for renewing the search was to try to provide some answers to those affected. It is therefore with a heavy heart that we end our current search without having achieved that aim,” Ocean Infinity’s Oliver Plunkett said.

Mr Plunkett said that although the result of their search was “extremely disappointing”, he hoped the company would be able to offer its services again in a future search for the plane.

One of eight autonomous underwater vehicles used by Ocean Infinity in its search. Picture: AFP media_cameraOne of eight autonomous underwater vehicles used by Ocean Infinity in its search. Picture: AFP

Malaysia’s transport minister, Anthony Loke, promised in May that there would be a full report into MH370’s disappearance.

“I can assure you the final report will be published with full disclosure*. There will not be any edits*, or anything hidden,” he said in May.

Voice 370, a group representing the relatives of passengers on board the flight, pushed the new Malaysian government to review everything related to MH370, wanting to know if any facts had been kept secret because they could make any governments or the airline look bad.

Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said the search had tested the limits of technology and capacity* of experts and people at sea.

He said it would only begin again if there was strong evidence that pointed searchers to the location of the missing plane.

“We will always remain hopeful that one day the aircraft will be located,” Mr McCormack said.

Australian investigators who led the first search believe the plane’s disappearance was due to an accident.

A girl has her face painted during the Day of Remembrance for MH370 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on March 3, 2018. Picture: AP media_cameraA girl has her face painted during the Day of Remembrance for MH370 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on March 3, 2018. Picture: AP

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GLOSSARY

  • aviation: flying
  • vanished: disappeared
  • confirmed: proven
  • traces: small pieces
  • initial: first
  • basis: arrangement, or the way it was
  • motivation: reason for doing it
  • disclosure: sharing information
  • edits: taking information out
  • capacity: maximum amount

LISTEN TO TODAY’S STORY

QUICK QUIZ

  1. Where was the plane travelling from and to?
  2. Three pieces of wing were the only traces found. Where were they found?
  3. Who is Oliver Plunkett and why is he quoted in the story?
  4. What is the name of the group representing relatives of the passengers?
  5. Why might facts have been kept secret?

CLASSROOM ACTIVITIES
1. Should the search have ended?
Do you think the search for MH370 should have been ended? Plan and create a piece of persuasive writing that explains your point of view on this issue. Remember to give clear reasons and points to make your writing convincing.

Time: Allow 25 minutes
Curriculum Links: English

2. Extension: Design a vessel that can search the ocean floor. Remember that your vessel will be used in the deepest and darkest parts of the ocean and needs to be able to move about without destroying the sea bed or harming living creatures. It must also be able to cover a large area. Your design should include labels that describe the special features of your vessel.

Time: Allow 30 minutes
Curriculum Links: Design and Technologies

VCOP ACTIVITY
After reading the article, with a partner, highlight all the openers you can find in blue. Discuss if they are powerful and varied openers or not. Why do you think the journalists has used a mix of simple and power openers? Would you change any, and why?

HAVE YOUR SAY: In one sentence, tell us what you think about this story. 
Please do not use one-word answers. Explain what you enjoyed or found interesting about the article. Use lots of adjectives.

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