To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Coastguard recovering Titan sub debris are taking ‘precautions’ in case they encounter human remains

Coastguard recovering Titan sub debris are taking ‘precautions’ in case they encounter human remains

The OceanGate Titan submersible imploded at depth, killing five people. Now, an investigation is taking place to establish what happened

The people who are investigating the site of the OceanGate Titan submersible, which suffered a ‘catastrophic implosion’ causing the death of five people, are taking extra caution in case they encounter human remains.

The submersible was the focus of a gigantic search and rescue mission in the North Atlantic last week after it lost contact with the surface during a planned dive to the wreck site of the Titanic.

After debris was discovered, it was determined that an implosion must have occurred, resulting in the death of all on board.

OceanGate CEO and co-founder Stockton Rush, father and son Shahzada and Suleman Dawood, French diver Paul-Henri Nargeolet, and British billionaire Hamish Harding were all on the craft at the time of the disastrous failure.

The OceanGate Titan submersible.
OceanGate/Becky Kagan Schott

Now, the American and Canadian maritime authorities are investigating what happened in the lead-up to the submersible imploding, including searching the ocean and listening to messages between the sub and pilot ship before communication was lost.

A Marine Board of Investigation – the highest level of investigation available to the US Coast Guard – has been summoned.

They will decide whether criminal or civil proceedings will result, as well as determine the cause of the tragedy.

Salvage operations are continuing at the accident site, according to Captain Jason Neubauer.

After the investigation is complete, a report with conclusions, evidence, and recommendations will be released.

Neubauer told reporters: “I’m not getting into the details of the recovery operations but we are taking all precautions on site if we are to encounter any human remains.

“At this time a priority of the investigation is to recover items from the sea floor.”

The investigation is being helped by the US Transportation Safety Board, the Canadian equivalent, the French Marine Casualties Investigation Board, and the UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch.

Interviews are being conducted with the crew of the Titan’s mothership, Polar Prince, which has now returned to port in St John’s, Newfoundland.

The investigators have been sent there to ‘gather information, conduct interviews, and assess the occurrence’, according to the US TSB.

The crew were interviewed to ‘collect information from the vessel’s voyage data recorder and other vessel systems that contain useful information’, TSB chair Kathy Fox said.

Safety concerns were reportedly raised about the Titan long before this dive, with one former contractor claiming to have emailed Stockton Rush directly to express concern in 2018.

An investigation into the implosion of the OceanGate Titan is now underway.
Dolores Harvey/Alamy Stock Photo

A 2018 lawsuit alleged that the vessel had ‘visible flaws’ that were reportedly ignored by the company’s senior management.

A group of submarine experts also expressed their ‘unanimous concern’ in a letter after the company did not seek outside evaluation and classification before taking paying customers to the Titanic wreck site.

A post on the OceanGate website from 2019 said that it didn’t seek to classify the sub because such inspections ‘do not ensure that operators adhere to proper operating procedures and decision-making processes – two areas that are much more important for mitigating risks at sea’.

The company has not yet commented on the safety concerns raised about the submersible, but has released a statement paying tribute to those on board and mourning their passing.

Featured Image Credit: The Canadian Press / Alamy Stock Photo / American Photo Archive/Alamy/PA Wire

Topics: World News, Titanic