The Coast Guard has convened a Marine Board of Investigation (MBI) into the loss of the Titan submersible and the five people on board.
The crew of the Polar Prince research vessel lost contact with the Titan submersible 1 hour and 45 minutes into its dive on Sunday, June 18, 2023. After an extensive search and rescue effort, the wreckage of the Titan submersible was located on the ocean floor approximately 1,500 feet off the bow of the wreck of Titanic.
An MBI is the highest level of investigation in the Coast Guard. Upon completion of the investigation, the Board will issue a report to the Commandant with the evidence collected, the facts established, its conclusions, and recommendations.
The MBI Board, the Coast Guard said, will work to determine:
• The cause of the casualty, including the cause of any death(s).
• Whether an act of misconduct, incompetence, negligence, unskillfulness, or willful violation of law committed by any individual licensed, certificated, or documented has contributed to the cause of the casualty, or to a death involved in the casualty, so that appropriate remedial action may be taken.
• Whether an act of misconduct, incompetence, negligence, unskillfulness, or willful violation of law committed by any person, including an officer, employee, or member of the Coast Guard, contributed to the cause of the casualty, or to a death involved in the casualty.
• Whether there is evidence that an act subjecting the offender to a civil penalty under the laws of the United States has been committed, so that appropriate action may be undertaken to collect a penalty.
• Whether there is evidence that a criminal act under the laws of the United States has been committed, so that the matter may be referred to appropriate authorities for prosecution.
• Whether there is need for new laws or regulations, or amendment or repeal of existing laws or regulations, to prevent the recurrence of the casualty.
The Coast Guard said the MBI is working in close coordination with other national and international authorities including the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board; Canadian Transportation Safety Board; French Marine Casualties Investigation Board; and United Kingdom Marine Accident Investigation Branch.