OceanGate Co-Founder Said “I’d Be In That Sub” If Given The Chance

(HorizonPost.com) – The co-founder of the company that created the ill-fated Titan submersible vessel has voiced his steadfast support for June’s catastrophic expedition. Guillermo Söhnlein co-founded OceanGate in 2009 with fellow ocean enthusiast Stockton Rush, who became CEO after Söhnlein left the company in 2013. 

Rush was among the five men killed on board the 22-foot long submersible after it lost contact just one hour and forty five minutes after setting off on its journey to view the wreckage of the Titanic, which sits 12,500 feet under the surface of the Atlantic Ocean.

The visit to the Titanic’s wreck was one that OceanGate, a company specialising in ocean tourism, had completed several times in recent years without failures. Fomer CEO Söhnlein, who remained a minority equity holder in the firm after his 2013 departure, emphasized this fact in recent interviews. He went so far as to state that he would have happily been on the voyage had he had the opportunity. 

This outspoken support followed news that many in the diving industry, or those connected to it, have criticised the company over its design and manufacturing process. Some such concerns have been voiced by the ‘Titanic’ director James Cameron, who is a deep-sea aficionado who has already visited the Titanic wreckage a whopping thirty times. Cameron believes that the carbon-fiber shell of the Titan was not safe for passengers, and has called for greater regulation of the industry.

Criticism of OceanGate and its handling of safety issues is nothing new, however, as it has emerged that CEO Stockton Rush, one of five who died on board the Titan, had defended his company’s approach to safety many times in the past. He had argued that peers in the industry were keen to use the concept of safety as a way to prevent innovation, and that their fears were unfounded. The US coastguard has confirmed that it believes all those on board the Titan died when the craft suddenly imploded after loss of cabin pressure.

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