Malaysian officials report evidence of last 'ping' from missing jetliner
Tuesday, March 25, 2014 - 01:45
March 25 - A final electronic signal from the missing Malaysian jetliner is being investigated as the search for wreckage continues. Jennifer Davis reports.
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Satellite data that confirmed the missing Malaysia jetliner crashed in the Indian Ocean includes a final electronic signal that is still a mystery to investigators, Malaysia's transport minister said Tuesday.
(SOUNDBITE) HISHAMMUDDIN HUSSEIN, MALAYSIAN TRANSPORT MINISTER, SAYING:
"There is evidence of a partial handshake between the aircraft and the groundstation at 0019 UTC. At this time this transmission is not understood and is subject to further ongoing work."
Officials say this data means the search for the missing plane is being significantly narrowed to a remote area in southern Indian Ocean off Australia.
A fleet of Chinese ships and helicopters headed to the area Tuesday as bad weather in the region forced the suspension of the search for the day.
Officials say finding aircraft debris remains their top concern. But the CEO of Malaysia Airlines says at this point he believes all passengers on board the plane are dead.
(SOUNDBITE) AHMAD JAUHARI YAHYA, MALAYSIA AIRLINES CEO, SAYING:
"We're talking about 17, 18 days. You know, yesterday was 17 day, today is 18 day. For anyone to survive that long is extremely remote."
Families of passengers on the missing plane are distraught at word that officials believe the plane has crashed into the Indian Ocean.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) JAYDEN BURROWS, PASSENGERS' SON SAYING:
"Our family appreciate the well-wishes and prayers but now we ask for privacy and request that our wish for family solitude be respected during this extremely heart-wrenching time."
The head of Malasyia Airlines was asked Tuesday if he plans to resign in light of complaints of how his company has handled this crisis. He says that's a personal decision he will make at a later time.
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