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Dutch survey vessel begins mapping ocean floor to aid hunt for MH370

Published on Jun 26, 2014 10:46 PM
A visitor writes on a placard carrying messages for the passengers of missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 during the 4th International Search and Rescue Conference and Exhibition in Kuala Lumpur on June 17, 2014. -- PHOTO: AFP 

AMSTERDAM (REUTERS) - Dutch engineers this week started a months-long survey to map unchartered deep-sea terrain at the bottom of the Indian Ocean, the next step in the search for the wreck of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370, a company official told Reuters.

A survey ship from Dutch engineering company Fugro, carrying 40 crew and technicians, began mapping out an area larger than the Netherlands, some 1,600 km east of the northwest coast of Australia.

The search for the lost plane is being coordinated by the Australian Transportation Safety Board and is expected to cost A$60 million (S$71 million) over the first year.

"It's a rough area," Mr Rob Luijnenburg, strategy director at Fugro, which usually conducts surveys for oil and telecommunications companies, said in an interview on Thursday.

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