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Youngest ever Titanic explorer would never have gone on OceanGate's Titan sub
Featured Image Credit: G. Michael Harris/Facebook/PA

Youngest ever Titanic explorer would never have gone on OceanGate's Titan sub

The son of a Titanic expedition leader was just 13 when he did a dive

The youngest ever record-holding Titanic explorer has said he would never have gone on OceanGate's Titan sub.

Sebastian Harris, accompanied his expedition leader father, G Michael Harris, and a pilot on a voyage to visit the wreck of the Titanic in 2005 - at just 13 - when he descended 12,500 feet.

Harris has criticised safety aboard the Titan submersible designed by Stockton Rush.

Rush was aboard when the Titan lost contact on Sunday (18 June) on an exploration of the wreckage that cost $250,000 per seat.

The search was called off on Thursday (22 June) after debris was discovered on the sea bed just 1,600 feet from the Titanic's bow.

The youngster was just 13 when he did the dive.
Associated Press / Alamy Stock Photo

The presumed implosion killed Stockton Rush, Titanic expert, Paul-Henri Nargeolet, British billionaire, Hamish Harding, British-Pakistani father, Shahzada Dawood, and his son, Suleman.

Harris was aboard a Russian Mir II sub, telling The US Sun he would never have done a dive on the Titan.

“I can’t say that I would go on it, no,” he admitted.

"The Mir submersible I went on had several hundred dives logged before we set off.”

However, even Harris' trip wasn't plain sailing.

"During our dive, we had a small safety issue. Suddenly our oxygen levels started to drop and I fell unconscious while we were diving down," he recalls.

"Fortunately my father and our pilot did not experience the same issue, otherwise it may have been fatal, and thankfully we had oxygen meters inside of the sub that were showing lower oxygen levels than normal. So we cranked it up and then I was back in the game."

He added: "But these sorts of small issues can and do happen with regularity, so the certification and safety of these vehicles is so important.

"These activities are inherently dangerous. A 13-year-old doesn't really have a sense of their own morality, so I was blissfully ignorant to a degree, but in different circumstances that could've ended in tragedy."

He did the dive with his dad who led expeditions.

Experts from across the field raised concerns about OceanGate and its Titanic site tours as far back as 2018, before tours began in 2021.

"It seems like maybe they weren't taking all available precautions and I think many folks in the industry will find that incredibly frustrating," said Harris.

"When you look at the totality of evidence and the construction of the submersible it doesn't look good for them."

He added that as well as superior tracking devices: "The Mir I dove in had a dog hatch at the top of the submarine, which from my understanding is there if you need to open it at the surface and there's enough time for two or three people to get out."

Topics: Titanic, World News, News