The United States Government continues to closely follow the developments regarding Malaysia Airlines flight MH 370 and is assisting the Malaysian Government with search and rescue efforts. We extend our thoughts and prayers to the loved ones of those on board the Malaysia Airlines flight.
At the request of the Malaysian Government, the United States Navy has dispatched two ships, the USS Pinckney and the USNS John Ericsson, to assist in the search and rescue efforts. The USS Pinckney (DDG 91), an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, arrives on scene this afternoon to assist in the search of the area. The ship carries two MH-60R helicopters which can be equipped for search and rescue. The USNS John Ericsson, a replenishment oiler operated by the Military Sealift Command, sailed from Singapore this morning to support the search and rescue efforts.
In addition to the ships, a U.S. Navy P-3C Orion aircraft departed from Kadena Air Base in Okinawa, Japan this morning and has begun to search the area. The aircraft brings long-range search, radar and communications capabilities to the efforts.
Beyond the search and recovery efforts, the U.S. Government is continuing to assist the Malaysian Government and Malaysia Airlines with their investigation into the aircraft’s disappearance. Teams from the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration are currently en route to the region to offer assistance. In addition, U.S. Embassy-based representatives from U.S. law enforcement agencies are in contact with their Malaysian counterparts.