A Titanic Fight Over More Expeditions

(ReliableNews.org) – A Georgia-based firm, RMS Titanic Inc., that owns the salvage rights of the Titanic wreckage plans to carry out an unmanned voyage next year. The company wants to take photos of the entire ship, including the inside of it. The US government is trying to stop it from happening.

The federal government filed a motion in a Norfolk, Virginia, US District Court to prevent the expedition from taking place. In the motion, the US attorney argues RMS Titanic Inc. is required by law to “obtain an authorization from the Secretary of Commerce” before embarking on any “research, exploration, salvage” or any other activity that could potentially disturb the wreckage.

The government is arguing that entering the ship’s hull would violate federal law and an international agreement with Great Britain that the shipwreck will be treated as a memorial to the 1,500+ people who died in the accident. The Titanic sank after hitting an iceberg on her maiden voyage from England to New York City.

In the filing, the government argued the Georgia firm “is not free to disregard this validly enacted federal law” but claims that’s exactly what it plans to do.

RMS Titanic Inc. informed the court that it intended to recover artifacts from the crash site that were not attached to the ship during the expedition. The company specifically mentioned the Marconi room, where the ship’s radio broadcast Morse code message after the wreck. Those messages were sent to other ships in the area, which made the rescue of hundreds possible.

The court battle comes months after the Titan expedition led by the founder of OceanGate disappeared during its descent to the site. An international search and rescue mission took place over a few days before the US Navy’s sonar detection revealed the vessel had imploded. All five passengers on board died in the accident, including a teenage boy and his father.

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