Washington, Jun 22 (EFE).- Two deepwater remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) have arrived at the site where rescue teams are in a frantic search for a tourist submersible that vanished during a dive to the wreckage of the Titanic in the Atlantic Ocean, the US coast guard confirmed on Thursday.
Five people were traveling on the OceanGate Expeditions’ Titan submersible when it went missing on Sunday after it lost contact with its mothership one hour and 45 minutes into the dive.
Stockton Rush, the CEO of OceanGate Expeditions, British explorer Hamish Harding, French dive expert Paul Henry Nargeolet and Pakistani businessman Shahzada Dawood and his son were aboard the Titan when it vanished.
“The Canadian vessel Horizon Arctic has deployed an ROV that has reached the seafloor and began its search for the missing sub,” the US Coastguard tweeted.
“The French vessel L’Atalante is preparing their ROV to enter the water,” it added.
The Victor 6000 ROV from the French Institute for Ocean Science, which arrived with a group of operators from the military port of Toulon, can reach a depth of 4,000 meters and has two mechanical arms capable of moving debris.
Victor 6000’s lights and cameras will allow the team on the surface to see in real-time what is at the bottom of the ocean.
“Underwater sounds have been detected in the search area, resulting in the redirection of remotely operated vehicle (ROV) operations to explore the origin,” the US Coastguard said on Wednesday.
Rescue efforts are focused on an area approximately 900 miles (1,450 kilometers) off Cape Cod in Massachusetts and 400 miles from St John’s in Newfoundland, Canada.
The team is made of experts from the US, Canada, France and the United Kingdom as well as planes, boats and underwater drones.
The deployment of the new equipment comes as experts fear the presumed air supply on the sub may have run out.EFE