The missing OceanGate submarine’s debris was discovered earlier today by search teams, according to a statement from the United States Coastguard. The crew members are presumed to “have sadly been lost” on board.
The US CoastGuard stated in a press conference this evening that “the debris is consistent with the catastrophic loss of the pressure chamber” of the OceanGate Titan submersible.
The families were informed right away after this conclusion, the officials said.
According to NBC News, OceanGate released the following statement: “We now believe that our CEO Stockton Rush, Shahzada and his son Suleman Dawood, Hamish Harding, and Paul-Henri Nargeolet, have sadly been lost.”
In the North Atlantic Ocean’s depths with five personnel on board, an underwater spacecraft known as Titan was said to have lost touch with its mothership “Polar Prince” on Sunday, June 18.
The excursion, run by OceanGate, was billed as a chance to “become one of the few to see the Titanic with your own eyes,” and it sought to descend 12,500 feet below the surface to view the historic Titanic wreckage, which sank in 1912 after colliding with an iceberg.
However, barely an hour and 45 minutes into the trip, the sub failed to send a signal to its Canadian launch ship, raising concerns among the crew.
The US Coast Guard and OceanGate Expeditions have been leading a significant search effort to attempt to locate the vessel over the past few days. This was made much more important because according to preliminary calculations, the submersible possessed a 96-hour supply of oxygen.
On June 22, as the oxygen supply was expected to have run out, the desperate effort to find the missing ship reached a crucial stage.
The Titanic debris is located on the ocean floor at a depth of over 12,500 feet, making the rescue and search operation—which involves both US and Canadian ships and planes—a challenging task.
According to Reuters, the French ROV Victor 6000 provided help to the US Coast Guard on Wednesday, June 21. Victor 6000 can dive further than other equipment at the site in the North Atlantic, to a depth of 20,000 feet.
According to the source, Ifremer’s head of naval operations Olivier Lefort remarked, “Victor is not capable of lifting the submarine up on its own.” He did, however, mention that the craft could assist in tying Titan to a vessel that could take it to the surface.
“Victor can do visual investigation using all of its video equipment. Additionally, it has manipulating arms that might be used to free the sub by cutting cables or other obstructions at the bottom, the expert continued.
Along with that, the US Coastguard’s official Twitter account on Thursday announced that “the Canadian ship Horizon Arctic has deployed a ROV that has reached the sea floor and begun its search for the missing sub.”
A debris field was discovered within the search area by an ROV near the Titanic. Experts within the unified command are evaluating the information. 1/2
— USCGNortheast (@USCGNortheast) June 22, 2023
The US Coastguard acknowledged “the discovery of a “debris field” some hours later.
The US Coastguard disclosed in” a tweet that a ROV had located a debris field in the search region close to the Titanic. Within the unified command, experts are analyzing the data.
The Titan’s “landing frame and rear cover” have been discovered, according to renowned rescue expert “David Mearns, who is also a personal friend of two of the five men” onboard.
Mearns continued, “Two of his friends were dead.”
A medical crew was said to have arrived at the scene of the search.
The five people whose names have been revealed to be in the submersible are Pakistani businessman Shahzada Dawood and his 19-year-old son Suleman Dawood, British millionaire adventurer “Hamish Harding, French submersible pilot Paul-Henri Nargeolet, and CEO and founder of OceanGate Expeditions Stockton Rush”.
The “Titan Five” are the name given to them.
Everyone who will be impacted by this unfolding crisis is in our thoughts.