The ill-fated voyage of the Titanic submarine has revealed heartbreaking facts about the passengers’ final moments on board.
According to the New York Times, Christine, the wife and mother of Shahzada and Suleman Dawood, who were among the unfortunate passengers, recalled the terrifying experience.
Family’s Obsession With Titanic
It all started in 2012, after they visited the Titanic exhibit in Singapore. Their interest intensified on a trip to Greenland in 2019, where they were fascinated by glaciers that turned into icebergs. It is worth noting that this is the same ocean hazard that sank the Titanic in 1912.
Christine saw an advertisement for OceanGate visits to the wrecks. Though she was supposed to accompany her husband, owing to pandemic-related delays, their 19-year-old son took her place.
The family’s journey was almost jeopardised when their flight to St. John’s, Newfoundland, from which the mother ship was sailing, was cancelled and then delayed.
The family, however, arrived on time, with Christine and her daughter joining the trip to see Shahzada, Suleman, and others board the submersible.
How Were They Prepared?
Each member of the group paid $250,000 to participate in the trip, but it was far from lavish. They slept in cramped rooms with bunk beds, ate buffet-style meals given on trays, and had meetings from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Interestingly, the passengers were given the option of watching the film “Titanic” during their downtime. Christine claimed that the sessions were mostly focused on the safety of the submersible, but that some technical aspects went over their heads. The Polar Prince’s crew prepared the passengers for what was ahead as they approached the launch location in the middle of the ocean.
Stockton Rush, the founder and CEO of OceanGate, recommended a “low-residue diet” the day before the journey, advised against drinking coffee on the morning of the descent, and suggested wearing thick socks and a beanie to keep warm in the chilly temps.
The lights aboard the sub were turned off to save battery power, but the occupants were informed they would be able to witness bioluminescent water creatures.
Despite Shahzada’s dissatisfaction with the required equipment prior to boarding the submersible, the day of departure was filled with excitement, with Shahzada frequently exclaiming, “I’m diving tomorrow!” Tragically, contact with the submersible was lost less than two hours into the descent.
The crew warned Christine that such hiccups were typical, and that if contact could not be restored within an hour, the submersible would release its weights and resurface. The submersible apparently imploded shortly after killing all of its occupants.
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