IPOH - The recovery of the tail section of the Indonesia AirAsia Flight QZ8501 aircraft is a step closer to identifying the cause for the crash, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said.
The Transport Minister, who hailed the recovery of the tail section, said this meant the search team was getting closer to finding the black boxes, which was not found within the tailfin.
"I understand the ping from the black box is getting stronger and nearer. It is an important step towards learning what happened to the aircraft," he told journalists during Perak MCA's Stronger Together dinner at SM Poi Lam in Pengkalan near here last night.
Liow said the operations centre at the Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport in Subang was getting daily reports from Indonesia and they were keeping close tabs on the matter.
"We are also coordinating our efforts with the Indonesian Government in assisting them."
In Malacca, Liow said Malaysia was determined to locate the missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 aircraft despite unfounded talk that had emerged to undermine the search mission.
The search mission, he said, had in fact been intensified with more search vessels being dispatched to the Indian Ocean by Malaysia and Australia.
Liow said Malaysia had never given up on the search, adding: "We are talking about a vast ocean and those spreading such talk should remember that even search and rescue work for Indonesia AirAsia Flight QZ8501 was tough although the depth of the crash, the bottom of Java Sea, is about 45m," he said after launching the Selangor MCA Wanita cadre training session at a leading resort in Alor Gajah here yesterday.
Liow said Petronas Malaysia sent its vessel to the search area to aid the mission, while Australia's two vessels were still conducting search in areas where the aircraft was believed to have gone down.
In a separate development, Liow said losses close to RM250mil had been recorded in the recent flood that affected the Kuala Lipis-Tumpat rail line.
On the floods, he said that so far, the Government had identified 2,260 households in Kelantan whose homes were completely ruined in the floods.
"We are working out how to help the victims, whether to build them temporary homes, put them up at vacant shoplots or community halls," he said.