OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush downplayed ‘really loud bang’ on prior Titanic sub trip

OceanGate Expeditions CEO Stockton Rush dismissed concerns about a “really loud bang” during a previous dive on the doomed Titan submersible.

Rush was filmed speaking to passengers for an episode of BBC’s The Travel Show in 2022 when he mentioned that a crew member had heard a troubling sound come from the sub while it was on the ocean surface.

He said the noise was “not a soothing sound” but downplayed the danger, adding that “almost every deep-sea sub makes a noise at some point.” 

It’s unclear what caused the noise, but former OceanGate employees and industry experts have said they repeatedly raised concerns about the Titan’s construction since it imploded on a dive to the Titanic wreckage, killing Rush and four others on board.

The sub’s “experimental” carbon-fibre hull wasn’t suitable for extreme depths in deep-sea exploration, and glue had leaked from the seams of ballast bags, whistleblowers said.

The Titan had not been independently certified.

In comments on the BBC show, Rush warned crew members and passengers of the dangers of descending to the Titanic wreck.

Stockton Rush played down safety concerns on the Titan submersible

“We want everyone going into this fully informed. This is an experimental sub, this is a dangerous environment.” 

Last month, former OceanGate Expeditions consultant Rob McCallum revealed he had written to Rush in 2018 that he was “potentially placing yourself and your clients in a dangerous dynamic”.

“As much as I appreciate entrepreneurship and innovation, you are potentially putting an entire industry at risk,” Mr McCallum told him.

The concerns were dismissed as “baseless cries” by Rush, who said he was personally insulted by them.

In a 2021 interview, Rush appeared to boast about “bending the rules” in his construction of the Titan.

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