Screenshots of what purports to be the Titan submersible’s final communications before its tragic destruction have gone viral online.
The unconfirmed script alleges to reveal the final words shared between someone on board the sub – presumably OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush – and the team on board its mothership the Polar Prince.
The document has raised a number of concerns, most notably by suggesting that passengers were aware of issues with the vessel some 18 minutes before its devastating implosion.
And whilst its authenticity remains widely disputed, a number of commentators have pointed out that its content is plausible given information provided by experts including 'Titanic' director James Cameron.
One TikTok user, who shared the screenshots, defended herself against the accusation that she’d shared it “just for likes”, by insisting: “I felt that this is a very plausible timeline regardless of if the documents themselves are real, based off of what other experts have said happened, what they have heard through their sources has happened.”
The dialogue begins at 7:52 am when the ship tells the Titan’s five passengers that they’re “clear for descent” down to the Titanic.
“Enjoy the dive gentlemen,” the Polar Prince tells them before instructing them to perform a “systems check” and giving them the green light to proceed.
“All systems are functioning normally. We’re in good shape. Continuing our descent as planned,” the sub announces at 8:34 am.
Around 15 minutes later they confirm that “all systems [are] stable” and that their descent is “continuing as planned”.
Once they hit 75 minutes into their descent, they say that everything is “under control” and they’re “enjoying the ride”.
Exerpts of the transcript which has been widely shared online
However, just 10 minutes later, things start to go awry.
According to the transcript, at 9:28 am the Titan crew noticed an alarm from the Real-Time Monitoring System (RTM).
Everyone agrees that they should abandon their descent and start making their way back up.
However, the ascent goes much slower than expected and, by the time they provide their final update, the RTM is showing “all red” alerts.
At 9:50 am, the Polar Prince reportedly tells the sub: “We’re not receiving you. Update please.”
It continues: “We are unable to read you. We are moving to recovery coordinates. Report if you read.”
The transcript ends at 9:57 am, with a final plea from the ship: “Please respond if you’re able.”
Viewers have responded by sharing their distress at the prospect of what the five Titan passengers would have gone through.
“They knew they were in trouble, imagine the sense of helplessness, listening to the noises must of been awful,” one wrote.
“Maybe they didn't suffer but mentally they knew something was wrong,” commented another.
Others questioned the extensive rescue efforts that occurred after the sub went missing, with a number suggesting authorities knew they would never find the passengers alive.
However, we’d again like to stress that this transcript has not been officially verified.
What we do know is that a formal inquiry has been launched into the loss of the vessel and the catastrophic implosion that claimed the lives of all on board.
Last week, the US Coast Guard confirmed that presumed human remains and debris were recovered from the seabed and that professionals are now confucting a “formal analysis” of their findings.
Meanwhile, Canada's Transportation Safety Board (TSB), conducting its own inquiry, said its investigators had completed preliminary interviews with the crew of the Polar Prince, and had seized the ships voyage data recorder.
The TSB also said it had "inspected, documented and cataloged" all the materials recovered from the accident site before they were turned over to US authorities.
Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.