Signals raise hopes of finding MH370 black boxes

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Signals raise hopes of finding MH370 black boxes

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Search teams in the Indian Ocean say they have the most promising lead so far in the hunt for missing flight MH370.

The Australian ship Ocean Shield has detected two “ping” signals consistent with those from a flight recorder.

Investigators say it could take days to confirm whether these are from the Boeing 777 which disappeared.

“There are many steps yet before these detections can be positively verified, as being from missing flight MH370. Firstly, we need to fix the position. Then, the Ocean Shield can lower the autonomous underwater vehicle (Bluefin 21) into the water and attempt to locate wreckage on the sea floor,” said the head of the Australian search operation, Angus Houston.

Britain’s HMS Echo, which is equipped with underwater sonar equipment, is due to reach the area, where the water is around 4,500 metres deep, later on Monday.

Search teams are running out of time. The black boxes are equipped with locater beacons whose batteries are thought to be running out, a month after the Malaysian plane vanished.

It was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew when it vanished off radar on March 8 and flew thousands of kilometres off its route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.