Navy Tug Finds Missing El Faro Bridge
On November 12, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) announced that the crew of the Navy tug Apache had located the missing bridge of the sunken ro/ro El Faro. Finding the bridge could help investigators locate the El Faro's data recorder, which could provide new information about her loss.
Using the condensed format of Twitter, the NTSB stated that “[the] #ElFaro bridge deck [has been] located. Search is ongoing for the vessel data recorder.”
The investigation of the wreck site had been temporarily halted due to Tropical Storm Kate, which had wind speeds of 45 kts over the Bahamas. The Apache resumed the search for the bridge using an ORION sidescan sonar on November 10.
On October 31, the NTSB announced that the crew of the Apache found an object suspected to be El Faro. The wreck is located in 15,000 feet of water some 35 miles northeast of Crooked Island in the Bahamas, and its identity was visually confirmed with dive video from the remotely operated submersible CURV 21.
The El Faro, which went down with all hands during Hurricane Joaquin on October 1, was bound for Puerto Rico at the time of the accident. All 28 American and five Polish nationals aboard are presumed dead.