OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush told an interviewer he didn’t want to hire a bunch of “50-year-old white guys” like other submarine companies.
Rush is currently missing along with the other passengers and one pilot aboard his company’s Titan submersible.
Rush, a 61-year-old white guy, said refused to hire such people to his team because he wanted his company to be “inspirational.”
“When I started the business, one of the things you’ll find, there are other sub-operators out there but they typically have gentleman who are ex-military submariners and you’ll see a whole bunch of 50-year-old white guys,” Rush told a representative of Teledyne Marine.
“I wanted our team to be younger, to be inspirational and I’m not going to inspire a 16-year-old to go pursue marine technology but a 25-year-old you know who’s a subpilot or a platform operator, or one of our techs can be inspirational.
“So we’ve really tried to get very intelligent, motivated, younger individuals involved because we’re doing things that are completely new.
“We’re taking approaches that are used largely in the aerospace industry, is related to safety and some of the preponderance of checklists things we do for risk assessments and things like that, that are more aviation related than ocean related and we can train people to do that.
“We can train someone to pilot the sub, we use a game controller so anybody can drive the sub.”
The CEO of OceanGate, which is operating the missing Titanic tourist submarine, explains that the company didn’t want to hire any experienced “50 year old white guys” because they weren’t “inspirational.” pic.twitter.com/kxXkhBn7oL
— Catch Up (@CatchUpFeed) June 21, 2023
But there is some good news from the tragedy.
A Canadian aircraft searching for the missing Titan submersible detected “banging” in 30-minute intervals coming from the area the sub disappeared according to an email sent by the Department of Homeland Security’s National Operations Center
“RCC Halifax launched a P8, Poseidon, which has underwater detection capabilities from the air,” the DHS e-mails read.
“The P8 deployed sonobuoys, which reported a contact in a position close to the distress position.
“The P8 heard banging sounds in the area every 30 minutes.
“Four hours later additional sonar was deployed and banging was still heard.
“The Joint Rescue Coordination Centre is working to find an underwater remote-operated vehicle through partner organizations to possibly assist.”
The United States Coast Guard said in a statement:
“Canadian P-3 aircraft detected underwater noises in the search area. As a result, ROV operations were relocated in an attempt to explore the origin of the noises. Those ROV searches have yielded negative results but continue.
“Additionally, the data from the P-3 aircraft has been shared with our U.S. Navy experts for further analysis which will be considered in future search plans.”
Canadian P-3 aircraft detected underwater noises in the search area. As a result, ROV operations were relocated in an attempt to explore the origin of the noises. Those ROV searches have yielded negative results but continue. 1/2
— USCGNortheast (@USCGNortheast) June 21, 2023
The four passengers onboard with a pilot are Pakistani businessman Shahzada Dawood and his son, Suleman; French Titanic expert Paul-Henri Nargeolet; and Hamish Harding, chairman of Dubai-based Action Aviation.
The OceanGate Expeditions Titan submarine had around 40 hours of air left as of yesterday afternoon.
Rear Adm. John Mauger of the US Coast Guard said search operations are underway in an area “about the size of Connecticut” about 900 miles off the coast of Cape Cod at a depth of 13,000 feet.
“It is a challenge to conduct a search in that remote area. But we are deploying all available assets to ensure that we can locate the craft and rescue the people on board,” Mauger said at a press conference.
A day before the OceanGate Expeditions-operated sub was launched, billionaire explorer Hamish Harding sent his friend, retired NASA astronaut Col. Terry Virts, an update on his trip.
“Hey, we’re headed out tomorrow, it looks good, the weather’s been bad so they’ve been waiting for this,” Harding said via text message.
“He understood the risks for sure, there’s no doubt about that,” Virts said.
“He went down to the deepest part of the ocean, set a few world records at the Mariana Trench and we talked quite a bit about the risks and the different things that they were going to be able to do,” he added.
“So he was very excited about it.”
Harding said earlier on Instagram:
“I am proud to finally announce that I joined @oceangateexped for their RMS TITANIC Mission as a mission specialist on the sub going down to the Titanic.
“Due to the worst winter in Newfoundland in 40 years, this mission is likely to be the first and only manned mission to the Titanic in 2023.
“A weather window has just opened up and we are going to attempt a dive tomorrow.
“We started steaming from St. Johns, Newfoundland, Canada yesterday and are planning to start dive operations around 4 am tomorrow morning.
“Until then we have a lot of preparations and briefings to do.
“The team on the sub has a couple of legendary explorers, some of which have done over 30 dives to the RMS Titanic since the 1980s including PH Nargeolet.”
Two other passengers have been identified.
Shahzada Dawood, 48, one of Pakistan’s wealthiest men who is worth around $340 million, and his son, Sulaiman Dawood, 19.