The mystery of missing Flight MH370, flying out of Malaysia, will go down in history as a bizarre affair whether the riddle is ever solved or not. The latest news from the ongoing search for the plane, and the people who vanished along with it, is that a technical issue has prevented an underwater drone search.
It has been discovered that the Bluefin-21, on loan from the USA, has a defect. Bluefin has not broken but has a defect. As the Mail Online puts it "Has the search for MH370 been a waste of time? Hunt for missing plane has cost Australia $10m so far... and crews have been using FAULTY equipment".
This news will convince MH370 conspiracy theorists that they are right.
Bluefin-21 is a robotic submarine which can identify objects by creating a sonar map of the sea floor. The defect however means it cannot function properly. Spare parts to repair the problem are expected to arrive in Australia Sunday. Another delay for an already lengthy, fruitless mission.
The Australian vessel Ocean Shield, which operates the robotic submarine in this search, is now travelling to Dampier, Western Australia, so that the repairs can be carried out.
The search for Flight MH370 filled mainstream news reports for weeks following its disappearance on March 8. As time has passed, and no trace of the plane or the people on board have been found, media interest has waned. The search for answers though goes on.
Conspiracy theorists have their own ideas about what happened to the flight. The lack of evidence found, in spite of a huge search which has lasted more than two months, only adds to the feeling that this tragedy just does not add up.
Although the plane is believed to have crashed into the ocean, north west of Perth Australia, not a trace has been found. The area is huge and there is no hard evidence that the plane crashed here. However on March 24 the Malaysian PM said that, based on new calculations, he could say "beyond reasonable doubt" that the plane crashed in the southern Indian Ocean, with no survivors.
Poor weather conditions have hampered the search and news that Bluefin-21 has a defect is obviously disappointing.
Vessels from many countries, including China, USA and UK joined the search for MH370. 239 people, of many nationalities, are missing. Most however were Chinese nationals.