Titan submersible likely dragged through ocean for three days before fatal trip
New information on OceanGate’s cost-saving procedures shows that it is likely the submersible was attached to the parent ship and dragged through the ocean for three days to get to the diving point
It was likely that the tiny Titan submersible was towed for three days through the ocean by its parent ship rather than being placed on board and then launched underwater, as advertised.
Weeks after the Titan submersible imploded under the ocean, information about OceanGate’s cost-saving procedures has become a hot topic among experts, who say that cheap materials and lack of logistics caused the deaths of the five people on board.
Though the Titan wasn’t large at all, there was still no room for the submersible aboard the larger ship, the Polar Prince, which also housed the guests during their voyage to the site of the Titanic. It takes three days to get to the spot in the middle of the ocean, which means the submersible was likely tethered and dragged along through the ocean for three days – before passengers boarded it.
Engineers from around the world have been talking to media outlets and testifying that the design choices made for the Titan submersible were anything but industry standard and that it is very likely that being banged up under the water for three days could have easily caused a malfunction aboard the undersea tourism vessel.
The move to drag it by OceanGate resulted in the sub being “tossed around pretty roughly,” claims Arnie Weissmann, the editor-in-chief of Travel Weekly, who took his own trip on the submersible in May.
His trip was cancelled after staying on board the larger ship for several days, with Stockton Rush explaining that large swells, as well as wind and fog, prevented the group from making the dive.
Other flaws in design were cause for concern, namely that the submersible was built with carbon fibre rather than titanium, and given a pill-like shape so that it could hold more tourists rather than being round like most undersea vessels.
When interviewed for a documentary, Rush explained that: “You are remembered for the rules you break, and I’ve broken some rules to make this. The carbon fiber and titanium — there’s a rule you don’t do that. Well, I did.”
Hamish Harding, 58, Pakistani tycoon Shahzada Dawood, 48, and his son Suleman Dawood, 19, and French Titanic expert Paul-Henry Nargeolet, 77, were the four passengers who died after the vessel lost communications to land on June 18. After a frantic and expensive search and worldwide media attention, the US military announced it detected the implosion on the same day that the sub went missing. Debris from the sub was discovered on the ocean floor days later, and it was believed it had crushed under pressure from the sea.
Now, experts believe that the main cause of the malfunction likely happened while Titan was being dragged undersea.