"Titanic" director James Cameron has commented on the OceanGate submersible tragedy that killed all five passengers on board the vessel as it was traveling to the bottom of the Atlantic to view the remains of the Titanic shipwreck.
Cameron said during an interview with ABC News that concerns about the submersible had been voiced loudly within the submergence engineering community.
Cameron said, "I’m struck by the similarity of the Titanic disaster itself, where the captain was repeatedly warned about ice ahead of his ship, and yet he steamed at full speed into an ice field on a moonless night and many people died as a result. For us, it’s a very similar tragedy where warnings went unheeded. To take place at the same exact site with all the diving that’s going on all around the world, I think it’s just astonishing. It’s really quite surreal."
Rear Adm. John Mauger of the Coast Guard said on Thursday that debris consistent "with a catastrophic implosion of the vessel" was found by search and rescue ROVs.
Paul Hankins, director of salvage operations and ocean engineering with the U.S. Navy, said search and rescue found "five different major pieces of debris that told us that it was the remains of the Titan."
Variety reported that in 2018 the Manned Underwater Vehicles committee of the Marine Technology Society wrote a message to OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush to tell him about "unanimous concern" about the Titan submersible, citing a letter delivered to Rush, according to the New York Times.
Cameron said he knew Titanic explorer Paul-Henri "PH" Nargeolet for 25 years, and said, "for him to have died tragically in this way is almost impossible for me to process."
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