"Shortly after 9 A.M., with the submersible about to be lifted out of the water with a towline back onto the ship, a water alarm sounded in the aft sphere, a self-contained part of the submersible containing machinery and oil storage. The towline had apparently fouled on the aft sphere hatch and wrenched it open. With the sound of water entering the aft compartment, Pisces III became inverted and began to sink back to the seabed. The aft sphere was now fully flooded. The additional weight of water now added over a tonne of extra weight to the submersible.
At 175 ft (53 m) the submersible jolted to a stop - held at the maximum length of the nylon towline. The crew now swung about in the sea currents until the rope snapped. The pilots immediately closed down all the electrical systems which instantly plunged the sub in total blackness. They also managed to release a 400 lb (181 kg) lead ballast weight as they descended. They both now readied themselves for the impact on the sea floor which occurred at 9:30 A.M at a speed judged later to be at 40 mph (64 km/h)."
Well that sounds terrifying.
"Well, we're down to 12 minutes of air"
*"It will be 24 minutes soon"*
"What was that?"
So, the CURV-III is still down there? Be interesting to recover it, just as a piece of history. A 70s vintage ROV that was instrumental in saving two people would make an awesome addition to a maritime museum. 1,600 feet is not that deep by modern ROV standards. I smell a training exercise.
Edit: Apparently not, though the first article says it was abandoned during the rescue operation. It was used again in 1976. Now was that the same vehicle or was CURV-III a class of ROVs?
Would these two guys need to be stashed in a decompression chamber for a while or what?
After reading this post title, I had to take a deep breath of beautiful oxygen.
> [The submersible] sank to the bottom of the ocean with ... 72 hours of available life support, which they were able to extend to 76 hours by careful conservation.
So really, they should have run out of air 4 hours sooner than they did. Amazing that they managed to extend their air supply as much as they did.
And now they're making a movie of being trapped in a 12 ft swimming pool...
I did not read article, is the air still down there? I need 12 minutes of air for my scavenger hunt.