You might have opened your social media this week and have been bombarded with key words such as: “Titanic,” “Missing,” “Submersible,” and “Tourist.” Is everyone talking about the Titanic shipwreck that happened over 100 years ago? If so, why? That’s not exactly it. Over the past week, the media has been covering a rescue mission for a missing submersible that was set to explore the Titanic shipwreck. With limited amounts of oxygen left inside the submersible, the search has been extensive and stressful. It has people wondering, are the submersible passengers dead?
On Friday, June 16, a submersible (roughly the size of a minivan) set out on a tourist experience to explore the Titanic at almost 4,000 meters underwater. This experience was funded and created by OceanGate, a company that provides underwater tourism. The passengers included Hamish Harding, who is a british businessman, Shahzada Dawood, a vice chairman of Dawood Hercules, his 19-year-old son, Suleman Dawood, Paul-Henri Nargeolet, a french sea explorer who is claimed to be “the greatest Titanic Explorer,” and Stockton Rush, CEO of OceanGate. After an hour and 45 minutes into the submarine’s descent, the crew lost communication.
At around 1 p.m. on Tuesday, June 20th, U.S. Coast Guard officials said that there was “only about 40 more hours” of oxygen left. Then, on June 22, OceanGate unfortunately confirmed the passengers were dead.
Despite some people who were hopeful that the five passengers will make it home safely, there were also a lot of skeptics on social media. One TikToker revealed the sad truth of what would happen to the passengers on board. A former anti-submarine officer in the Navy named Timothy James shared his views on the survival rate of the passengers on TikTok. James explained that even if they had found the submarine, it would be impossible to lift it from the water or open any of the doors due to buoyant forces. “It would take an act of God to pull something like this 13,000 feet under the water,” he said.
Unfortunately, it’s a catastrophic and traumatic loss for those passengers and their families.