Argentinian submarine found a year after it vanished with 44 aboard

Lester Mason
November 19, 2018

Argentine Defense Minister Oscar Aguad said "we don't have the means to resurface the [ARA San Juan] submarine", which was found between late Friday and early Saturday 800 meters underwater in the Atlantic Ocean after having gone missing a year ago.

Ocean Infinity, a USA company specializing in deep water search and recovery, began looking for the ARA San Juan in September, using autonomous underwater vehicles operated by a team on board its ship Seabed Constructor, the firm said.

A massive worldwide search was launched after the submarine disappeared on November 15 past year but hopes of finding the crew alive were given up two weeks later and the search was scaled down.

The first anniversary of the submarine's disappearance was commemorated at the Mar del Plata naval base on November 15, with President Mauricio Macri in attendance.

He said the hull was "totally deformed, collapsed and imploded" and debris was scattered over an area of about 70m.

The crew had been ordered to return to a naval base at Mar del Plata on the country's east coast, after reporting water had entered the vessel through its snorkel.

Among those lost was Eliana Maria Krawczyk, Argentina's first female submarine officer.

The San Juan - a German-built diesel-electric TR-1700 class submarine - was commissioned in the mid-1980s.

The Argentine navy's last contact with the vessel was at approximately 07:30 (10:30 GMT) on 15 November, at which point its captain reportedly confirmed that the crew were well. The captain later said that it had been contained.

Days later, it emerged that a sound consistent with an explosion had been detected in the ocean near the sub's last known location by the United States and an worldwide nuclear weapons monitor.

The saltwater dripped on to a battery tray in the prow, causing the battery to short circuit and to smoulder, he said. Federal police raided naval bases and other buildings last January as part of an investigation, soon after the government dismissed the head of the navy.

On Saturday, Plunkett tweeted: "Our thoughts are with the many families affected by this awful tragedy".

An air and sea search involved units from 13 countries but the majority withdrew before the end of 2017, as the wintry South Atlantic refused to give up its secrets.

The company unsuccessfully searched for the Malaysia Airlines plane that disappeared in 2014 over the Indian Ocean.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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