Officials announced today that all 53 crew members of the Indonesian Navy submarine that went. Officials announced today that all 53 crew members of the Indonesian Navy submarine that went missing have been confirmed dead. Authorities lost contact with the after it submerged early on Wednesday during a torpedo drill in the Bali Strait. Search crews had been operating under the assumption that the vessel had sunk after debris, including parts of a torpedo straightener, were found floating in the water yesterday.
At a media conference today, Indonesian Air Chief Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto said the warship Rigel had scanned the area around the debris using sonar and a magnetometer. A remote-operated vehicle was sent to take images underwater. “Weparts, like horizontal steering, anchor, exterior body, vertical steering, and other parts like safety suits for the crew,” said Marshal Tjahjanto. “Based on that authentic proof, I declare here that the Nanggala submarine sank, and the crew died.”
According to Navy Chief of Staff Admiral Yudo Margono, the vessel was found at 850 meters, having broken into three parts. The submarine was not designed to survive at any depth below 500 meters. As for the cause of the sinking, Admiral Margona merely said it was “not a human error” but a “natural environment factor”. “The tragedy shocked all of us. Not only the families of the 53people,” President Joko Widodo said today.
The vessel was scheduled to conduct the training exercises when it requested permission to dive. It lost contact shortly afterward. Authorities have not offered possible explanations for the submarine’s sudden disappearance or commented on whether the decades-old vessel was overloaded. The military has said the submarine, delivered to Indonesia in 1981, was seaworthy. Neighboring Singapore, Malaysia, the, and Australia were among the nations helping in the hunt, with nearly two dozen ships deployed to scour a search zone covering about 34 square kilometers.
Australia’s HMAS Ballarat arrived on Saturday with a US P-8 Poseidon aircraft also helping to look for the craft. Singapore’s MV Swift Rescue — a submarine rescue vessel — was expected later Saturday. Indonesia now joins the list of countries struck by fatal submarine accidents. Among the worst was the 2000 sinking of the Kursk, the pride of Russia’s Northern Fleet. That submarine was on maneuvers in the Barents Sea when it sank with all 118 aboard. An inquiry found a torpedo had exploded, detonating all the others.
Most of its crew died instantly, but some survived for severalbefore suffocating. In 2003, 70 Chinese naval , apparently strangled, in an accident on a Ming-class submarine during exercises 2003. Five years later, 20 by poisonous gas when a fire extinguishing system was accidentally activated on a Russian submarine being tested in the Sea of Japan. And in 2018, authorities that had gone missing a year earlier with 44 sailors aboard.