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Hope is lost: Debris from submersible found near Titanic wreckage

coral reef
(© the Ocean Agency – stock.adobe.com)

The Coast Guard reported a field of debris on Thursday from the OceanGate submersible missing since Sunday.

According to HuffPost, the debris field was found by a remotely operated vehicle and was evaluated by experts from the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy, Canadian Coast Guard and OceanGate Expeditions.

A tail cone from the Titan was found approximately 1,600 feet from the bow of the Titanic this morning. Additional debris was “consistent with the catastrophic loss of the pressure chamber,” First Coast Guard District Commander Rear Adm. John Mauger said in a press briefing.

In the debris was also found four other major pieces of the submersible indicating a “catastrophic implosion” of the vessel which carried five individuals. Lost on the Titan were Stockton Rush, CEO of the company leading the expedition, a British adventurer, two members of a Pakistani business family and Paul-Henry Nargeolet, a French explorer and Titanic expert.

“These men were true explorers who shared a distinct spirit of adventure, and a deep passion for exploring and protecting the world’s oceans. Our hearts are with these five souls and every member of their families during this tragic time. We grieve the loss of life and joy they brought to everyone they knew.”

Before discovering debris, the hope was to find the Titan, which would have run out of oxygen for passengers this morning. However, Dr. Richard Moon, a professor of anesthesiology at Duke University, said passengers could have survived another 10 to 20 hours after the oxygen tank was depleted.

Questions remain about exactly what happened to the Titan and when catastrophe struck.

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.