Last updated: 12:45 PM ET, Fri July 24 2015

Search Official Remains Confident Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Will Be Found

Impacting Travel | Patrick Clarke | July 24, 2015

Search Official Remains Confident Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 Will Be Found

Despite more than 16 months having passed since the mysterious disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, the man currently leading search efforts in the Indian Ocean, Martin Dolan of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, remains adamant that the plane's wreckage will be found.

"Once we started looking and defining the search area, it became quite clear it could take up to two years. We still remain confident it will be found in the next year," said Dolan via the U.K.'s Express

Flight MH370 was traveling from the Malaysian capital of Kuala Lumpur to Beijing carrying 239 passengers and crew when it disappeared from radar on March 8, 2014. While the latest data indicates that the plane crashed in the southern Indian Ocean, no trace of the aircraft has been discovered. 

"All the analysis we have puts the aircraft somewhere in that large search area," said Dolan via the Express. "We have no more information that would allow us to calculate a different area and governments accept that."

The search area encompasses 120,000 square kilometers, or just under 75,000 square miles. So far, officials have covered half of that area with no luck. "All the information we have puts the aircraft in this defined search area," added Dolan via the Express, referring to the many theories surrounding Flight MH370's disappearance. "The crews and equipment being used are excellent and the data we're receiving is of a quality beyond the specifications yet."

Dolan said the search of the remaining area will be completed by next summer, but added that officials are optimistic and expect to find the wreckage before the search is completed. 

The Express reports the year-plus investigation into Flight MH370's disappearance has cost an estimated $110 million. In addition to Australia, Malaysia and China are assisting in ongoing search efforts. 

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