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Corrected satellite data shifts focus south in MH370 search: Australian official

Published on Apr 6, 2014 12:19 PM
A Royal New Zealand Air Force Orion aircraft prepares to take off from Royal Australian Air Force Base Pearce near Perth on April 6, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

PERTH (AFP) - Corrected satellite data has shifted the focus for the hunt for missing Malaysia Airline Flight MH370 to the south, the head of the agency coordinating the search mission said on Sunday.

"The whole of the existing search area remains the most likely area that the aircraft entered the water, but based on the new advice the southern area now has a higher priority," retired air chief marshal Angus Houston said.

Missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 special report

The Chinese ship Haixun 01, which has detected some signals that could be from the plane's beacons, is in this more southern area of the Indian Ocean search zone.

Planes and ships were being diverted on Sunday to the area where Haixun 01 detected signals consistent with a black box beacon in the hunt for missing flight MH370.

"Today Royal Australian Air Force assets will deploy to assist in further examining the acoustic signals in the vicinity of where the Chinese ship has detected the sounds," said Mr Houston.

"HMS Echo and Australian Defence Vessel Ocean Shield are also being directed to join Haixun 01 as expeditiously as possible to assist with either discounting or confirming the detecting."