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US Coast Guard Convenes Marine Board of Investigation to Probe Titan Loss

Rear Admiral John Mauger, the First Coast Guard District commander, speaks during a press conference updating about the search of the missing OceanGate Expeditions submersible, which is carrying five people to explore the wreck of the sunken Titanic, in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S., June 22, 2023. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

US Coast Guard Convenes Marine Board of Investigation to Probe Titan Loss

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June 25, 2023

The U.S. Coast Guard has convened a Marine Board of Investigation (MBI), its highest level of investigation, into the loss of the Titan submersible and the five people on board.

The crew of the Canadian-flagged expedition vessel Polar Prince lost contact with the Titan 1 hour and 45 minutes into its dive on Sunday, June 18. Following an extensive multi-national search and rescue effort led by the U.S. Coast Guard, wreckage of the Titan was located on the ocean floor approximately 500 meters off the bow of the Titanic approximately 96 hours after the sub set off.

News of the Marine Board of Investigation comes after the National Transportation Safety Board on Friday said the Coast Guard had declared the incident as a Major Marine Casualty.

Marine Boards of Investigation are led by a Chairperson with marine casualty investigation experience and supported by qualified Coast Guard marine casualty investigators, technical experts, legal advisors, and other support personnel. In this case, the Chairperson will be Captain Jason D. Neubauer, chief of the Office of Investigations & Analysis at Coast Guard Headquarters. The Board will work to determine the cause of a casualty, whether misconduct or negligence contributed to the cause, if any laws were violated, and if new laws or regulations are needed to prevent future casualties.

Upon completion of the investigation, the Board will issue a report to the Coast Guard Commandant with the evidence collected, the facts established, its conclusions, and recommendations.

The Coast Guard said the MBI will work in close coordination with other national and international authorities including the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Canadian Transportation Safety Board (TSB), French Marine Casualties Investigation Board, and United Kingdom Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB).

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada has also initiated an an investigation into the incident as the authority of the Polar Prince’s flag state.

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