The U.S. Coast Guard has found what appears to be human remains among the Titan submersible debris.
The remains were recovered “within the wreckage” of the submersible, the Coast Guard said in a news release – an announcement coming nearly a week after authorities determined the Titanic-bound vessel had imploded in the North Atlantic, killing all five men aboard.
The presumed remains, which the military branch said will be analyzed by US medical professionals, were among the evidence from the submersible that arrived at a Canadian pier Wednesday.
The company that owns the remotely operated vehicles that brought Titan’s remains to the surface, Pelagic Research Services, for now has “successfully completed” the offshore work, it told CNN.
A white panel-like piece – taller than the two men guiding it onto land – and another similarly sized part with cords and wires draped with white tarp were among the debris taken off the anchor handling vessel Horizon Arctic at the Canadian Coast Guard pier in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, photos by The Canadian Press’ Paul Daly show.
It was not immediately clear what those pieces were. Titan was made of carbon fiber and titanium and weighed 23,000 pounds, with room for only five adults, according to OceanGate Expeditions, which operated the craft as part of its offering for extreme tourists to get close to the century-old wreckage of the Titanic for $250,000 per person.
Crew members “have been working around the clock now for 10 days, through the physical and mental challenges of this operation, and are anxious to finish the mission and return to their loved ones,” the company said in a statement.
Pelagic Research Services deferred questions to the US Coast Guard, adding its team cannot comment on or provide any information related to the investigation into the Titan’s demise. The company will hold a news conference at its East Aurora, New York, operations base after “our team has regrouped,” it said.
A Transportation Safety Board of Canada spokesperson declined to comment to CNN, saying more information about its investigation is forthcoming as warranted.
The OceanGate submersible and its five passengers began their descent to the 111-year-old wreckage of the Titanic on the morning of June 18. But about an hour and 45 minutes into its dive, the cramped vessel lost contact with its mother ship and did not surface as expected, kicking off a massive, dayslong multinational search and rescue operation that captured the world’s attention.