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Fears Australia’s first submarine could be looted by 'metal pirates'


Eldorado
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Scavengers, trophy hunters and “metal pirates” are looting the treasures under the seas – and there are fears Australia’s first submarine could be next.

The location of HMAS AE1’s wreck is a secret closely held by a small group of people, including relatives of the 35 men who were on board when the Royal Australian Navy vessel sank at the outbreak of the first world war.

The 726-tonne submarine was travelling in hazy weather off the coast of what is now Papua New Guinea when it disappeared, and it was declared lost at sea on 14 September 1914. For more than a century people searched for it, not knowing the fate of those sailors.

Guardian article

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Graves should NOT be pillaged in this way!

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That is a ridiculously stupid story,  a shipwreck, possibly with live torpedoes, sunk over 100 years ago, they they think some diver will dive down and brig up rusted metal???  not to mention from a location that only several dozens of people know about????  seems like they are making a case for "protection" grants. it could be a good chunk of change. 

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In December 2017, another search—the 13th—was conducted using the Dutch survey ship Fugro Equator, off the Duke of York Islands. This expedition was funded by the Commonwealth Government and the Silentworld Foundation with additional assistance from the Submarine Institute of Australia and the Australian National Ma]ritime Museum.

As a result of this effort, the submarine was found at a depth of 300 metres (980 ft) and was seen to be well preserved and in one piece.

RV Petrel was enlisted to survey the wreckage. During the survey, it was discovered that the submarine's rear torpedo tube was fully opened. The exact location of the wreck was not announced by the Australian government at the time of discovery, in order to protect it from "unauthorised salvage attempts".

The government's stated position is that the wreck will be treated as a war grave.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMAS_AE1

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