Kuala Lumpur- Malaysian authorities today issued a new version of the last communication between air traffic control and the cockpit of the missing flight MH370.
The last words spoken were "Good night Malaysian three seven zero" - and not "all right, good night" as reported. The transport ministry said forensic investigations would determine whether the pilot or co-pilot spoke the words. The plane, carrying 239 people, was travelling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing when it disappeared on 8 March, 2014.
The plane's last contact took place at 01:19 Malaysian time. Malaysian authorities say that based on satellite data they have concluded that it crashed into the southern Indian Ocean. The new version of the last words is more formal and more in keeping with the way a pilot might usually speak to air traffic control than the wording previously reported. It is not clear why it has changed or why it has taken the authorities this long to determine this, he says.
Aircraft and ships are scouring seas west of the Australian city of Perth looking for any trace of the flight. On Tuesday, 10 planes and nine ships were expected to take part in a search covering an area of about 120,000 square kilometres. Weather in the search area was expected to be poor, with areas of low visibility, the Australian Joint Agency Co-ordination Centre (JACC) said. The JACC, led by a former top Australian military official, was formed on Monday to oversee the search and co-ordinate with the relevant international agencies.
Evidence from satellite "pings" received from the plane after its last contact with air traffic control and radar has been used to delineate a search area. While floating objects have been spotted by search teams, none has been identified as coming from the Boeing 777. The search teams are deploying a device known as a "towed pinger locator" (TPL) to listen for ultrasonic signals from the plane's "black box" flight-data recorders. The signals from the flight recorders last about 30 days.