As Search Area Widens for Missing Jet, Countries Weigh Roles

As the hunt for the missing Malaysia Airlines jet continues, the search area has grown to a massive 2.24 million sq. nautical miles, but military and financial resources could pressure some countries to scale back their efforts. The U.S. Navy announced that it has stopped using the destroyer USS Kidd in the search in favor of more efficient surveillance aircraft. Other countries, especially smaller ones with less economic resources, will likely scale back their search efforts as well. “We as a country have to determine our return on investment and how long we can keep expending critical assets, which is why we’re pulling the USS Kidd,” said Greg Feith, a former investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board. The U.S. will continue to help Malaysia refine its radar data information in an effort to narrow down the search. But some parts of the plane could be lost forever, especially if the airliner crashed into the Indian Ocean, where the average depth is more than 12,000 ft.

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