International Search Continues for Missing Submersible En Route to Titanic Wreck
Berlin – As the international search operation continued for a submersible that went missing en route to the wreck of the Titanic, a man who was one of the vehicle company’s first customers described his dive at the site two years ago as a “kamikaze operation.”
A Daring Adventure
“You have to be a little crazy to do this kind of thing,” said Arthur Loibl, a 61-year-old German adventurer and retired businessman.
Loibl told The Associated Press that he first got the idea to see the wreckage of the Titanic during a trip to the South Pole in 2016. At the time, a Russian company was offering dives for half a million dollars.
A Dream Realized
After Washington state-based OceanGate announced its program a year later, he jumped at the chance, paying $100,000 for a 2019 dive that was canceled when the first submersible failed pretesting.
Two years later, he took part in a successful voyage together with OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush, French diver and Titanic expert Paul-Henry Nargeolet, and two Englishmen.
A Claustrophobic Journey
“Imagine a metal tube a few meters long and a metal plate for the floor. You can’t stand up. You can’t be on your knees. Everyone sits next to or on top of another,” Loibl said. “You can’t be claustrophobic.”
During the 2.5-hour climb and descent, the lights were turned off to conserve power, he noted, with all lighting coming from a fluorescent wand.
A Challenging Expedition
The dive was delayed several times to fix a problem with the battery and balance ballast. In total, the trip took 10.5 hours.
The group was lucky and got a spectacular view of the sunken cruiser, Loibl said, unlike visitors from other expeditions who saw little or no debris at all. Some customers missed non-refundable payments when bad weather made the descent impossible.
Loibl described Rush as a skilled repairman who tried to troubleshoot whatever he had available to perform the dives, though in retrospect he noted that “it was a little questionable.”
“Seeing it now, I was a bit naive,” Loibl said. “It was a kamikaze operation.”
Safety Concerns Arise as OceanGate Submersible Goes Missing
The OceanGate submersible, in which Rush, Nargeolet, a British adventurer, and two members of a Pakistani business family were traveling, disappeared on Sunday after leaving for the wreckage of the famous ocean liner, which collided with an iceberg and sank in 1912. Just 700 of all approximately 2,200 passengers and crew survived.
Allegations of Safety Issues
Known allegations now suggest that significant safety warnings were issued during the development of the submersible, dubbed Titan.
United States Coast Guard Leads Search Operation
The United States Coast Guard was leading the search operation. An aircraft detected sounds underwater Tuesday and Wednesday, though authorities weren’t sure what caused them.
From the submersible’s external cameras. Once at the wreck site, Loibl described the experience as “amazing” and “overwhelming,” stating that he could see the ship’s hull and artifacts scattered on the ocean floor.
The Missing Submersible
The submersible that went missing, called the Cyclops II, was on its way to join the Titanic Survey Expedition organized by OceanGate. The Cyclops II was being transported on a support ship when it was reported missing. The search operation involves multiple countries, including the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom, as well as private companies and organizations.
The cause of the submersible’s disappearance is still unknown, and authorities are actively working to locate and recover the vehicle. OceanGate stated that they are confident in the resilience and safety of their submersibles and are fully committed to supporting the search and rescue efforts.
Continuing the Exploration
Despite the incident, OceanGate remains determined to continue its exploration of the Titanic wreck. The company plans to resume its expedition once the missing submersible is located or replaced. Meanwhile, Arthur Loibl hopes for a successful outcome and expressed his willingness to dive again if given the opportunity.
How has the incident affected OceanGate’s plans to explore the Titanic wreck, and what is the company’s stance on the safety of their submersibles
OceanGate’s plans to explore the Titanic wreck have been affected by the incident involving their submersibles. The incident has raised concerns about the safety of the company’s submersibles and their capability to withstand the pressures of deep-sea exploration.
Following the incident, OceanGate is likely to re-evaluate and reinforce the safety measures in place for their submersibles. They will conduct thorough investigations to determine the cause of the incident and make appropriate modifications to ensure the safety of future expeditions.
The company’s stance on the safety of their submersibles is expected to be proactive and stringent. They will likely prioritize taking all necessary precautions to prevent any future accidents and to protect the lives of passengers and crew during their deep-sea explorations.
OceanGate may also enhance their collaboration with experts in marine engineering and technology to further improve the safety features of their submersibles and address any concerns raised by the incident.