Curated By: Shankhyaneel Sarkar
Last Updated: June 23, 2023, 16:23 IST
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
A report by the New York Post revealed that OceanGate Expeditions CEO and founder Stockton Rush once boasted about “breaking some rules” in order to build the Titan submersible which imploded deep in the Atlantic Ocean on Sunday, killing him and four other co-passengers.
“I think it was General MacArthur who said ‘You’re remembered for the rules you break’. You know I’ve broken some rules to make this (the Titan). I think I’ve broken them with logic and good engineering behind me,” Stockton said during a 2021 interview with Mexican travel blogger Alan Estrada.
Stockton claimed that he used carbon fibre and titanium for the materials used to construct the submersible, thus breaking a rule when it comes to construction of deep-sea submersibles.
“Carbon fibre and titanium — there’s a rule you don’t do that. Well I did. It’s picking the rules you break that are the ones that will add value to others and add value to society,” Rush could be heard saying in the video.
The New York Post report revealed that Rush was known for flouting regulations and cutting corners.
The Marine Technology Society (MTS) warned OceanGate in 2018 that the experimental designs and inability to stick to safety standards could lead to “catastrophic” results. An official also alleged that OceanGate intentionally launched its submersible in international waters in order to evade industry regulations.
A highly-placed employee of OceanGate, David Lochridge, who used to serve as the Director of Marine Operations was fired after he raised concerns about the vessel’s build and lack of safety testing.
“The paying passengers would not be aware, and would not be informed, of this experimental design, the lack of non-destructive testing of the hull, or that hazardous flammable materials were being used within the submersible,” Lochridge’s attorney said in a filing after he sued OceanGate for wrongful termination.
Rush said that safety regulations and rules held back true innovation. The fact that the submersible was run by an off-brand video game controller also was criticised after a clip from a CBS interview revealed how the submersible was controlled.
“You know, at some point, safety just is a pure waste. I mean, if you just want to be safe, don’t get out of bed,” Rush was heard saying in the video.