OceanGate will SUSPEND all exploration and business operations

OceanGate will SUSPEND all exploration and business operations following death of Titanic Five in ‘catastrophic implosion’ during $250,000 mission to wreck of liner

OceanGate has announced it is suspending all exploration and commercial operations after the death of the Titanic Five last month – including the company’s CEO.

‘OceanGate has suspended all exploration and commercial operations,’ the top of the company’s official website stated. 

The notice is listed in small red font on the website’s homepage. It’s unclear when OceanGate added the suspension notice or what would happen to people who paid up to $250,000  for future expeditions. 

The decision comes weeks after five people died on an OceanGate sub during an implosion while it descended to the site. 

That sparked questions about OceanGate’s past safety record, concerns with previous practices and the future of tourism at the famed 1912 wreck.  

The five men onboard had all died after the Titan sub, pictured here, imploded on its expedition

French Navy veteran PH Nargeolet (left) was on the sub along with Stockton Rush (right), CEO of the OceanGate Expedition

Five people had been on board, including British billionaire adventurer Hamish Harding (left)  and Shahzada Dawood and his son Suleman, who was just 19

Just last week, OceanGate’s website still included pages advertising trips to the Titanic – weeks after five people, including the company CEO, were killed on one of the journeys. 

A page titled ‘Titan Expedition – Explore the Titanic’ was still available online which offered a chance to dive to the shipwreck in the company’s submersible. 

‘Intrepid travelers will sail from the Atlantic coast of Canada for an 8-day expedition to dive on the iconic wreck that lies 380 miles offshore and 3,800 meters below the surface,’ the page states.

Titan suffered a ‘catastrophic implosion’ during a voyage to the wreckage of the Titanic, 12,500ft beneath the Atlantic’s surface. 

Debris from the OceanGate sub is recovered after the implosion at the Titanic wreck site

Five passengers, including Rush, British billionaire Hamish Harding and French explorer Paul-Henri Nargeolet, Shahzada Dawood, 58, and his 19-year-old son Suleman were killed during a dive to the Titanic last month.

Rush – a self-professed ‘innovator’ who sought to push the boundaries on passenger diving – was one of five died in what proved to be the Titan’s final voyage, after its pressure chamber imploded near the 3800meter depths where the Titanic rests.

He reportedly believed going to the depths of the Atlantic in the Titan was ‘safer than crossing the street’, despite having been warned by dozens of experts in 2018 that his company’s ‘experimental’ approaches could be ‘catastrophic’.

The safety of the submersible and OceanGate’s dismissal of several warnings has drawn considerable criticism after the Titan went missing during a June 18 dive to the seafloor.

The CEO – who considered himself to be more of a scientist than a salesman despite much of his efforts being focused on marketing the sub trips – was begged in 2019 to suspend operations after a submersible expert heard cracking sounds during one of the Titan’s dives in the Bahamas.

On June 18, an OceanGate sub was launched in the Atlantic Ocean 400 nautical miles off the coast of Newfoundland at the site of the 1912 Titanic shipwreck.

The five passengers started to descend as Rush piloted the vessel.

An hour and 45 minutes into the dive, the sub lost contact with the surface ship. It wasn’t until the next day that the missing sub was publicly known. That led to a massive international response to rescue the five passengers.

Ships from across the globe started to make the trek to help search for the missing sub at the site while the hours and estimated oxygen ticked down.

Days later, it was announced the five people aboard the sub were believed to have been killed in a likely implosion.

It was also revealed that a US Navy monitoring system picked up a possible sound of the implosion in the descent- but search efforts continued.

OceanGate, based in Washington, shuttered its door amid the search and after the disaster and questions flew about the future of deep-sea tourism at the site.

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