Titanic tour submersible still missing, search resumes

Titanic tour submersible still missing, search resumes

BOSTON (NewsNation) — Rescuers continue their urgent search for a missing tourist submersible that had descended to visit the site of the Titanic wreck. A surface search was conducted all night long and a team will resume an underwater search Tuesday morning.

Members of the U.S. Coast Guard have called it a “search and rescue mission.”

But they’re in a serious race against time, because the five people they’re looking for have a limited oxygen supply.

As of Monday night, authorities would not confirm the identity of anyone onboard, but it was estimated the sub had between 70 to 96 hours of oxygen available, as of the last news conference.

The operation to find five people presumably alive and waiting to be rescued inside a submersible sitting well below the surface of the Atlantic is challenging and time-consuming. But no one’s giving up.

The missing submersible Titan, which holds up to five people onboard, carries tourists to view the Titanic’s remains about 12,000 feet at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Newfoundland, Canada. The infamous ship sank in 1912 after hitting an iceberg.

The crew began its two-mile underwater descent to see the wreckage from the Titanic early Sunday morning. But an hour and 45 minutes into its voyage, the vessel stopped communicating.

The submersible has no GPS system or locator beacon, but it’s capable of floating to the ocean surface on its own.

It is unclear whether the tour had gotten lost or if there was an issue on board. There are concerns the Titan may have suffered a catastrophic failure underwater.

But by air and by sea, every tool and piece of technology available is being used to look for the missing submersible.

“Right now, our capability is limited to sonar buoys and listening for sound but we’re working very hard to increase the capability,” U.S. Coast Guard Rear Adm. John Mauger said.

Both the U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards have deployed American C-130 aircraft and a Canadian P8 Poseidon as part of the aerial search. A fleet of search and rescue boats remains searching in the water.

“And we are doing everything we can do to make sure we can locate and rescue those on board,” Mauger said.

Journalist David Pogue, who has traveled on the Titan, told NewsNation’s Elizabeth Vargas just how dangerous the ride is.

“You know, it’s not going to be Delta Airlines level safety. You sign a waiver. It says these are the different ways I could die. They outline it for you,” Pogue said.

Oceangate Expeditions, the U.S. company that owns and operates the Titan said in a statement, “Our entire focus is on the crew members in the submersible and their families. We are deeply thankful for the extensive assistance we have received from several government agencies and deep sea companies in our efforts to reestablish contact with the submersible.”

“They’re first and foremost in our thoughts every moment of this search operation,” Mauger said.

The Titan is one of a kind. There’s no other vessel in the world that has its capabilities.

It’s also design to float back to the surface on its own. Another reason why there’s so much concern is that there could be something preventing the submarine from resurfacing even on its own.

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