Oct. 31, 2015—Investigators aboard a U.S. Navy ship say they have found wreckage of a vessel they believe to be the cargo ship El Faro, which sank off the Bahamas nearly a month ago during Hurricane Joaquin.
The USNS Apache, which has been hunting for remains of El Faro for about a week using sonar equipment, detected images of the vessel near El Faro’s last known position, north of Crooked Island in the Bahamas. El Faro and its 33 crew members went missing the morning of Oct. 1, after its captain notified the ship’s owner that the vessel had lost propulsion and was taking on water. A week-long search turned up no sign of survivors. The sinking is the worst disaster involving a U.S. cargo ship in decades.
The National Transportation Safety Board, which is leading the investigation into the sinking, said what are believed to be images of El Faro were found around 1:36 p.m. EDT Saturday. A remotely operated vehicle will be deployed to confirm the finding.
If confirmed, the NTSB will begin documenting the vessel and nearby debris, and attempt to find its voyage data recorder, the equivalent of an airplane’s black box. That process could take 15 days or more depending on the weather, the NTSB said.
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