Wreckage found on the ocean bottom off the Bahamas has been confirmed by the National Transportation Safety Board
to be the lost cargo ship El Faro, which sank with 33 crew aboard October 1.
Wreckage consistent with the 790-foot El Faro was discovered upright and intact by a U.S. Navy salvage team using side-scanning sonar equipment in the vicinity of the cargo ship’s last known position on October 31, according to NTSB. The wreck sits roughly 15,000 feet below the surface.
A deep ocean remotely operated vehicle outfitted with a video camera was used to survey and identify the vessel, today confirming the sunken ship as El Faro.
El Faro went missing while sailing from Florida to Puerto Rico last month amid Hurricane Joaquin. The ship lost communication with the U.S. Coast Guard after
the captain reported that the ship was without propulsion and was taking on water in the path of the storm. On board were 28 American crew members and five Polish contract workers, none of whom were rescued.
The search will now seek to retrieve El Faro’s voyage data recorder in hopes of obtaining more information about the loss of the vessel, NTSB said. Survey of the area and vessel continues.
The Navy will attempt to recover any human remains should they be encountered during the search, NTSB said.