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Missing Titanic Submarine: International Rescue Teams Continue Search Amid Fears for Oxygen Levels

Missing Titanic Submarine: International Rescue Teams Continue Search Amid Fears for Oxygen Levels

Rescue efforts are in full swing to trace the missing Titanic submarine.  As per the latest news report, there are now just hours of oxygen left in the vessel for the five passengers aboard it. The submersible went missing during a trip to view the wreckage of the Titanic, sparking a massive search operation in the Atlantic Ocean. A Canadian aircraft searching for the sub in the Atlantic Ocean detected intermittent “banging” noises from the vicinity of its last known location, the US Coast Guard said. However, the US Coast Guard clarified that they “don’t know the source of the noise”.

Titan submersible
Pic courtesy Reuters: The Titan submersible, operated by OceanGate Expeditions to explore the wreckage of the sunken Titanic off the coast of Newfoundland, dives in an undated photograph /OceanGate Expeditions/Handout via REUTERS / FILE PHOTO

The submarine was last seen on Sunday morning, June 19. At the time it was about 1,450 kilometers off Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The Canadian Coast Guard, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the Royal Canadian Air Force are conducting the search for the submarine.

The Canadian expedition ship, MV Polar Prince, deployed the 22-foot carbon-fibre and titanium craft named the Titan. It descended approximately 13,000 feet to reach the shipwreck site of the Titanic, which lies in two parts on the ocean floor off Newfoundland. The Titan lost contact with The Polar Prince one hour and 45 minutes into its dive, according to the US Coast Guard. OceanGate Expeditions, the company that offers the tours to the Titanic site said it is “mobilizing all options” to locate the vehicle and its crew, who have between 70 and 96 hours of life support.

The Titan is a state-of-the-art submarine that is equipped with a variety of safety features. However, the submarine is also capable of diving to depths of up to 4,000 meters. This makes its search even more difficult.

The Titan carries OceanGate Expeditions CEO and founder Stockton Rush. He is accompanied by British billionaire explorer Hamish Harding, renowned French diver Paul-Henri Nargeolet, and Pakistani businessman Shahzada Dawood. Also on board is Shahzada Dawood’s 19-year-old son, Suleman Dawood.

The Titanic wreckage, discovered in 1985, is a popular destination for explorers and researchers. They usually want to study the history and condition of the ship that sank in 1912 after hitting an iceberg. OceanGate Expeditions says its mission is to “document and preserve” the site and to “share it with researchers and citizen explorers alike”.

The search for the missing submersible involves sonar buoys and ships, reconnaissance planes and unmanned submersible vehicles. These vessels are scouring an area of the ocean “the size of Connecticut” for any trace of the Titan. The US and Canadian coast guards are leading the rescue efforts, with assistance from several deep-sea companies.

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