In the desperate search to find Titan, the OceanGate tourist submersible that disappeared Sunday while diving toward the Titanic wreckage, a glimmer of hope: A Canadian plane using sonar picked up underwater noises in the search area, the US Coast Guard wrote on Twitter shortly after midnight ET.
Searchers detected banging sounds every 30 minutes for four hours, according to an internal US government memo obtained by Rolling Stone. To some experts, these noises at timed intervals indicate the crew is still alive. “If you made a continuous noise, that’s not going to get picked up, but doing it every 30 minutes, that suggests humans,” explorer Chris Brown told the BBC.
But efforts to find the source of the banging have so far “yielded negative results,” the Coast Guard said.
Time is running out
Yesterday afternoon, the Coast Guard estimated that Titan had fewer than 40 hours of oxygen remaining to sustain life, implying that supplies will run out by 6am ET on Thursday.
And we still don’t know what happened to Titan since it went missing on Sunday. Some potential theories:
Titan is floating on the ocean surface after suffering a communication outage (best-case scenario).
It got tangled in the Titanic wreckage.
Or it suffered a disastrous hull breach (worst-case scenario).
Who is on board? The five-person crew includes the CEO of OceanGate, a father-son duo from a wealthy Pakistani family, a British billionaire explorer, and a Titanic expert who has led six expeditions to the wreckage. They are deadbolted inside by at least 17 bolts, according to a reporter who previously took this trip, and can’t get out unless they’re rescued.
‘Extreme tourism’ under the microscope
OceanGate’s Titanic voyages are a part of the growing “extreme tourism” industry that ferries the uber-wealthy to rarely explored places miles above—and below—sea level. But these trips aren’t guaranteed to end with a champagne shower from Richard Branson, and the potential disaster aboard Titan highlights the elevated risks associated with this kind of travel…
…especially if the vessel had safety issues. Reports are beginning to emerge that former OceanGate employees and outside industry leaders raised alarms about the safety of Titan years ago, before the company launched its $250,000 expeditions to view the Titantic wreckage. In 2018, OceanGate’s director of marine operations warned that its certification and testing process would “subject passengers to potential extreme danger in an experimental submersible.”—CC, NF
– Do Morning Brew de hoje (21/06).
Bônus do tipo ~divertido: BILIONÁRIOS foram DE BASE no SUBMARINO em que a RAZÃO AFUNDOU mais que o TITANIC? | João Carvalho