An Australian ship towing a U.S. Navy “pinger” locator has twice picked up sustained signals that may be from missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370’s “black boxes,” and searchers are likely to deploy an underwater exploratory vehicle soon to look for wreckage, authorities said Monday.
The first acoustic event detected by Ocean Shield lasted two hours and 20 minutes, and the second lasted 13 minutes, said Australian Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, who is coordinating search efforts from Perth, Australia.
“We are encouraged we are very close to where we need to be,” said Houston, describing the finding as the best lead so far in the quest to find the missing Boeing 777. However, he urged the media and the public to treat the news “cautiously and responsibly.”
Houston said that for perhaps the next 24 hours, the Ocean Shield would continue passing slowly over the area where the signals were detected, trying to get a better fix on the actual location.
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