The United States Coast Guard announced Thursday that a “debris field” was discovered in the search area for the missing submersible that disappeared Sunday.
“A debris field was discovered within the search area by an ROV near the Titanic. Experts within the unified command are evaluating the information.”
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
A press conference is scheduled for 3:00 p.m.
The Titan submersible departed off the coast of St. John’s, Newfoundland, on Sunday but lost contact with the mother ship less than two hours after it began its descent in search of the Titanic wreckage. Experts have estimated that the submersible would have run out of oxygen by Thursday, as it was only equipped with 96 hours of emergency oxygen at the time of its departure.
There was hope on Tuesday and Wednesday when Canadian surveillance planes detected underwater sound, described by some as similar to banging noises, NPR reported. (RELATED: Wife Of Missing Submersible Pilot Is Great-Great-Grandaughter Of Passengers Who Sank On Titanic)
There are five passengers onboard the missing submersible: billionaire British explorer Hamish Harding, French oceanographer and Titanic researcher Paul-Henri Nargeolet, OceanGate CEO and pilot Stockton Rush, Pakistani business mogul Shahzada Dawood and his son, 19-year-old Suleman.
Rush had complained in 2019 of “obscenely safe” regulations during an interview with Smithsonian Magazine, arguing the allegedly strict rules prevented innovation within the “commercial sub” industry. But Marine Technology Society member Bart Kemper said OceanGate, the company that owns the Titan, was able to dodge some regulations by deploying the sub in international waters where U.S. laws aren’t applicable, according to Insider.