WATCH: (Mar. 21, 2014) Australian search planes head back to the southern Indian Ocean, for another attempt at spotting possible debris from Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. Hours of searching on Friday, turned up nothing in the increasingly frustrating search for answers. Brian Mooar reports.
- Malaysia asking US to provide undersea search equipment; Pentagon has spent $2.5M on search so far, $1.5M still budgeted for aid
- Planes flying deep into the southern Indian Ocean find ”nothing of significance” Friday
- Searchers are looking for two large floating objects detected by a satellite off the southwest coast of Australia, about halfway to the desolate islands of the Antarctic.
- U.S. company provides Australia satellite imagery of possible debris
An Australian search plane returned to Perth on Friday after its hunt for missing Malaysia Airlines flight 370 turned up no new information.
Flight Lieutenant Russell Adams told media at an air force base in Perth that conditions near the site of the spotted objects was excellent but that they had to return because “conditions back here precluded us from staying on.”
READ MORE: Australia spots possible plane debris
The P-3 Orion is one of five planes searching on Friday for objects spotted in satellite images released on Thursday thought to possibly be linked to the missing airliner.
Meanwhile in Malaysia, the acting transport minister said they were still waiting for Australia to confirm whether the objects had any connection to the flight.
WATCH: Search for missing Malaysian plane turns up no leads in southern Indian ocean
At a daily news briefing, Malaysia’s Acting Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said they were continuing search operations in both northern and southern “corridors.”
‘It may have slipped to the bottom’
Warren Truss, who is acting prime minister while Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, said the search was difficult due to testing weather conditions and because the satellite imagery was five days old.
“So something that was floating on the sea that long ago may no longer be floating – it may have slipped to the bottom. It’s also certain that any debris or other material would have moved a significant distance over that time, potentially hundreds of kilometres.”
Truss told reporters that two Chinese aircraft are expected to arrive in Perth on Saturday to join the search, and two Japanese aircraft will be arriving Sunday. A small flotilla of ships coming to Australia from China was still several days away.
“We are doing all that we can, devoting all the resources we can and we will not give up until all of the options have been exhausted,” Truss said. “We can’t be certain that the sightings are in fact debris from the aircraft (but) it is about the only lead that is around at the present time.”
U.S. company provides Australia satellite imagery
A U.S. satellite imagery company said it provided the Australian government with images located by satellite and identified by analysts as possible debris.
“We have been informed by an Australian government official that it was our imagery Prime Minister Abbott referred to in his recent comments,” said DigitalGlobe in a statement to Global News. “No conclusions have been reached about the origins of the debris or objects shown in the imagery, and we are not aware that any subsequent search missions have been able to locate it.”
Discussion with relatives of passengers ‘difficult’
Malaysia’s acting transport minister acknowledged on Friday that discussions with relatives of those missing onboard Flight MH370 had been “very difficult.”
“The one question that they really want to know is the answer to which we do not have, which is ‘where are their loved ones, and where is the airplane?'” said Hussein at a daily media briefing.
Earlier this week, frustrated Chinese families of passengers said they would set up a “self-help” committee and urged the Malaysian government to send representatives to Beijing to brief them.
“We want Malaysia to send government representatives to attend the meeting with families,” said Mr Wen, the father of one of the missing passengers.
“Only the government can answer our questions about where the plane is and where our families are,” he added.
WATCH: Aliens? Zombies? A black hole? The island from “Lost”? With no solid leads yet in the case of the missing Malaysian airliner, wild theories are starting to run rampant.