A catastrophic failure in a Chinese nuclear-powered submarine caused the death of 55 sailors including the captain of the submarine and 21 officers. The incident is said to have taken place in the Yellow Sea on August 21. The submarine was identified to be 093-417, which was armed with torpedos. China has absolutely denied the loss of any submarine in the region, but the news of the catastrophic failure of the submarine has spread throughout the world like wildfire.
A secret report has claimed that the members were slowly poisoned by the oxygen system’s failure. The report is provided by the UK and is based on military intelligence which has a high level of secrecy.
What Happened to the Chinese Submarine
As per the report by The Times, the submarine faced a ‘chain and anchor obstacle’, which was there to trap the submarine of the US and other nations.
The report stated that system failure took more than six hours of constant repair before the submarine could even resurface. By then, the oxygen system already malfunctioned which resulted in the deaths of 55 crew members from hypoxia.
The identified submarine 093-417 is one of the six Type-093 attack submarines that China has. These submarines entered service in the last 15 years and are 351 feet long and armed with torpedoes. They have a displacement of 6,096 tonnes and are designed to be quieter than the previous models.
What is a Chain and Anchor Obstacle?
The trap in which the submarine got stuck is called a chain and anchor obstacle or trap which is a device used to destroy submarines at the bottom of the sea.
It consists of a heavy chain made of heavy metal balls that hangs between two anchors which are laid on the seabed and can be several miles long.
When a submarine hits the chain and anchor trap, it can easily get entangled in the chain and the weight of the chain can cause extreme damage to the rudder and propeller. It also prevents the submarine from moving and in some cases, pulls the submarine to the bottom of the sea.
They are often placed in strategic locations such as important shipping lanes and event chokepoints. They can be used to protect ports and other sensitive areas. British intelligence agencies have claimed that China set up these traps in the Yellow Sea to protect themselves but got their own ship stuck in there.
Concerns About the Marine Life
There has been no confirmation by the Chinese government regarding the suspected loss of their submarine but a question has been bothering the minds of experts and that is, what would it mean for the aquatic lifeforms?
The submarine that sank due to a critical error faced by the submarine is in fact a nuclear submarine and that should raise concern on a global scale because the damage done to the aquatic lifeforms could have extreme consequences if the nuclear reactor ruptures and starts leaking.
If the nuclear reactor ruptures then it would cause the highly radioactive fission products to leak and cause significant risk to life and would be a safety hazard to people in a big radius.