The Australia's Joint Agency Coordination Centre (JACC) reports that both search teams focused on the MH370 on the Fugro Discovery and Fugro Equator have returned to the search area this week to resume search operations.
The JACC reported that the Fugro Discovery returned on the 14th of November while the Fugro Equator arrived at the focus area the next day.
The Fugro Equator, in particular, has been doing bathymetry work before launching the deep tow and resuming the search. Apparently, the team had been studying the underwater depth of the search area's ocean floor to attain a firmer grasp on the mission.
The JACC has admitted that progress in locating the missing Malaysia Airlines wreckage is relatively slow, but this is down to the search team's thorough and methodical operations. Another factor that the group cited for slowing down progress is weather conditions that have an impact on the search activities. However, they are expecting the weather to improve in the coming months, which may hasten the discovery of the MH370.
The report also mentions that once the debris and any remains are found from the downed plane, all three countries with vested interest in the wreckage will work together to set up recovery activities. Priority will be given to securing evidence that will be used for the accident investigation. The operations are still focusing on the area off the coast of Western Australia.
The JACC has been working on search efforts since March 30, 2014, when the Prime Minister of Australia, the Hon. Tony Abbott, MP, established the coordination between the group and the Australian Government.
Meanwhile, the International Business Times reports that two reasons that had briefly delayed the operations of the Discovery and Equator was a resupply schedule and when one crew member of the Discovery became ill and had to be brought to hospital. The crew member in question has since been diagnosed with appendicitis.
The report quotes JACC in an earlier update that "The remoteness of the search area has been an ongoing challenge in the search for MH370." It also explained the reason the Discovery had to return to port to rush the colleague to a land-based hospital.
"At the time the crew member became unwell, Fugro Discovery was more than 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles) from Fremantle - well beyond the range of any land-based helicopter. The only viable option was to return to port ... this incident is a timely reminder of the difficult conditions in which crew members work."