- A submarine goes ‘missing’ in Indonesia
- The submarine may be ‘too deep’ to rescue
- The lives of 53 people are now in a race ‘against the clock’
A submarine goes ‘missing’ in Indonesia. Navy ships were searching Thursday for an Indonesian submarine that may be too deep to rescue, greatly reducing the 53 crew’s chances of survival, AP reports.
Several neighboring countries were preparing to join the complex operation. The KRI Nanggala 402, a diesel submarine, missed a scheduled reporting call during a training exercise on Wednesday. Authorities reported an oil stain and the smell of diesel fuel near where it started its last dive.
They are looking for a submarine with 53 crew members
The last dive was about 60 miles (96 kilometers) north of the resort island of Bali, although there was no definitive evidence connecting the slick to the submarine, AP says. It is estimated that the submarine would have oxygen until 3 a.m. on Saturday.
Indonesian authorities believed that the submarine had sunk to a depth of between 600 and 700 meters (2,000 to 2,300 feet), much more than the depth limit of about 200 meters (656) estimated by a company that reconditioned the vessel between 2009 and 2012, reveals AP.
Unidentified ‘rare’ object found
The Indonesian Navy Chief of Staff, Admiral Yudo Margono, told reporters Thursday that rescuers found an unidentified object with high magnetism in the area, which authorities expected to be the submarine.
Most submarines are destroyed if they go down more than 200 meters, due to the pressure on their hull, explained Ahn Guk-hyeon, an employee of the South Korean firm Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering. for The Associated Press.
‘Horrible’ ending for the 53 crew?
The company renewed much of the internal systems and structures of the Indonesian submarine but does not have updated information because it has not worked on the vessel in the last nine years, and now it is feared that there is “little” time left to recover the submarine.
Frank Owen, secretary of the Australian Submarine Institute, also said the submarine could be too deep for a rescue team to operate. Owen noted that the sub could be recovered from 500 meters (1,640 feet) without damage, but could not tell if it would have imploded at 700 meters (2,297 feet).
Could they have ‘signed their death warrant’?
“Most rescue systems are only evaluated up to about 600 meters (1,969 feet),” explained the expert. “They can go lower because they will have a margin of safety in the design, but the pumps and other systems associated with that may not have the capacity to operate,” he told AP.
“So they can survive that depth, but not necessarily operate,” he added. In November 2017, an Argentine submarine disappeared in the South Atlantic with 44 crew members, almost a year before the submarine was located at a depth of 800 meters (2,625 feet), AP recalls.
Search ‘desperate’ and ‘against the clock’
In 2019, 14 sailors died due to a fire in a Russian deep-sea research submersible. Ships, submarines and aircraft of the Indonesian navy participated in the “desperate” search for the vessel, according to the Army.
The above, while an oceanographic survey vessel with underwater detection equipment was on its way to the site. Authorities said they had not yet been able to contact the missing submarine, according to the AP.
Multiple countries searching for the submarine
Rescue ships from Singapore and Malaysia were expected to arrive in the area on Saturday. Australia, the United States, Germany, France, Russia, India and Turkey also offered assistance, the army said. “This looks like a terrible tragedy,” Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton told Sydney Radio 2GB.
“And it’s in a very deep water zone, maybe 7 (00) or 800 meters (between 2,297 feet and 2,625 feet) deep,” added Peter Dutton. This submarine was traveling with 53 crew members, who as of the writing of this note, it is not known if they are alive or dead.
What happened to the submarine?
In the submarine there were 49 crew members, their commander and three gunners, according to the Indonesian Ministry of Defense, cited by The Associated Press. The Navy said an electrical failure could have occurred during the dive.
This failure could cause the submarine to lose control and not be able to carry out the emergency procedures that would have allowed it to return to the surface, points out AP. The chief of the armed forces, Hadi Tjahjanto, said the submarine was participating in a training exercise.
Disappeared in the middle of missile exercise
When he stopped making a planned call, it was that he set off the alarms about his disappearance. The submarine is believed to have disappeared into the sea about 95 kilometers north of Bali, Tjahjanto said previously. He added that the Navy sent warships and asked Singapore and Australia for help.
These countries have submarine rescue ships. The German-made Indonesian submarine, which had been in service since the early 1980s, was on its way to participate in a missile firing exercise that was scheduled to take place Thursday with the presence of Tjahjanto and other military leaders, the AP says.
A fleet of five submarines belongs to Indonesia, a country that plans to increase to eight by 2024. The country has faced numerous recent challenges to its maritime claims, including several incidents with Chinese vessels near the Natuna Islands.
Furthermore, the country has ‘stolen’ international attention due to the various tragedies that have hit Indonesia in recent weeks. A few weeks ago a strong earthquake killed at least eight people, injured 23 others and damaged more than 300 buildings on Java, Indonesia’s main island.
New tragedy after deadly earthquake
The Geological Institute The United States said that the 6.0 magnitude earthquake struck the southern coast of the island at 2:00 in the afternoon local time. It had its epicenter 45 kilometers south of the city of Sumberpucung, in the Malang District, in the province of East Java, reveals AP.
Rahmat Triyono, director of Indonesia’s earthquake and tsunami center, said in a statement that the earthquake did not have the potential to cause a tsunami. Was the second disaster deadly to hit Indonesia that week after Cyclone Seroja killed at least 174 people and left 48 missing.