back to article US nuclear submarine bumps into unidentified underwater object in South China Sea

A US nuclear submarine has "struck an object" while submerged in the South China Sea – and the US Navy is insisting that it wasn't a Chinese submarine. Almost a dozen sailors were reportedly injured in the underwater collision, according to the US Naval Institute's news offshoot. The submarine was operating in the South China …

  1. b0llchit Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    Other scenarios

    There are some scenarios plausible if allowed to let the mind wander a bit.

    Alternate 1: Nessie escaped or a sibling has been exploring the neighborhood for food. The sub just was there at the wrong time.

    Alternate 2: The Chinese may be extending the Chinese Wall and building it under water with shipping containers.

    Oh well, we'd probably never heard of the "problem" if it had been a Chinese or Russian sub. These countries obviously do not bump into something.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Other scenarios

      Alternate 2.2: China is trying to extend its reach into international waters by building a new island from the ground up (possibly from shipping containers), and the sub found it.

      1. b0llchit Silver badge
        Joke

        Re: Other scenarios

        ...and the sub found it.

        Ehm, yes... Just like your face "finds" the floor when falling?

        ;-)

      2. martinusher Silver badge

        Re: Other scenarios

        This might explain the current scarcity of shipping containers.

        1. fajensen

          Re: Other scenarios

          An why my package from Wish is late!

      3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Other scenarios

        On the other hand, if it was so near the bottom as to be able to bump into a wreck or shipping container, then I can only imagine they must have been in an especially shallow area. Subs don't generally sail so close to the bottom.

    2. Graham Dawson Silver badge

      Re: Other scenarios

      Alternate 3: ghost-angel aliens. Better send Ed Harris.

      1. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
        Gimp

        Re: Other scenarios

        Alternate 1: Nessie escaped or a sibling has been exploring the neighborhood for food. The sub just was there at the wrong time.

        Having got dinner, did "Nessie" decide on a little one in one time with the strangely phallic submarine.

        Icon = Closest thing to a wet suit.

    3. Wade Burchette

      Re: Other scenarios

      Another alternative: Homer Simpson was temporarily made captain when the original captain was mysteriously jettisoned out of a torpedo tube. Since it was his first day, he crashed the sub.

    4. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Other scenarios

      The sub hit an Avanc raised by China.

      See, The Scar by China Mieville.

      1. Kane Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Other scenarios

        "See, The Scar by China Mieville."

        Welp, that's another one to add to the ever growing list!

    5. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Other scenarios

      Per Martinusher (above): This might explain the current scarcity of shipping containers.

      I would agree as Occams Razor might involved here.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Other scenarios

        > I would agree as Occams Razor might involved here.

        A crateful of Occam's Razors has gone missing, if one listens to politicians nowadays.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Other scenarios

          If Occam's are anything like the chinese Seagull razor blades I bought, sinking a container full to the bottom of the ocean, is a humanitarian act.

          (They are the only blades allowed in mental hospitals, and police cells, as you could only commit suicide with them, if you have a hammer to force them through your skin)

        2. parlei

          Re: Other scenarios

          Someone described the concept of "political tourette". You know, when superlatives and catchphrases gets added to otherwise perfectly normal sentences. The perfectly reasonable sentence "we want to improve the school system" get the words "greatest", "for the children", "world-leading", etc (and in certain cases "immigrants") added to it and turns into something meaningless destined for sound-bites.

    6. Medixstiff

      Re: Other scenarios

      Alternate 3: Deep Rising was real.

    7. hnwombat
      Mushroom

      Re: Other scenarios

      Alternate 3: R'lyeh has been found.

      (Icon for the immiment demise of humankind at the hands of Cthulhu.)

    8. NXM

      Re: Other scenarios

      She didn't escape, she goes on her holidays to Windermere whenever someone turns up on Loch Ness with a sonar array. There are underground tunnels.

      This is the source of the mistaken 'Great Pike of Windermere' legend: it was Nessie all along.

  2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Intolerable. What would a Chinese submarine be doing there? The South China sea is British !

    I shall be writing to the Telegraph, we must send a gunboat

    1. low_resolution_foxxes Silver badge

      I appreciated this.

    2. James O'Shea

      You already are. HMS Queen Liz, complete with a few Yankee bootnecks to increase the size of the boarding party for the cutting-out expedition on the 'secret' naval base on the 'illegal' 'artificial' island that doesn't officially exist. And there's even a few coat-holders from Germany, the Netherlands, India, Australia, and possibly others, to help. (Not France. France is still sulking.)

      Now which Bond film was it which featured a possible surface action in the South China Sea?

      [exits, humming 'Heart of Oak']

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Does the HMS Oneself have guns ?

        I suppose we could throw the F35 invoices at them and have them die laughing

        1. Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

          Yes, sort of

          One's super-carrier does have guns, but not the sort of naval weapon designed to take on other vessels, or shore bombardment. There are some miniguns, and a close-in weapon system for last ditch defence, but if something has got close enough to the carrier to be shooting at it, then the destroyer screen has failed. Perish the thought. HMSQE potency is almost entirely within the aircraft.

          1. Korev Silver badge
            Pirate

            Re: Yes, sort of

            but if something has got close enough to the carrier to be shooting at it, then the destroyer screen has failed

            A good job that Britain has so many T45s and also they are renowned for being so reliable...

      2. Sixtiesplastictrektableware Bronze badge

        That reminds of an old Louis L'Amour legend.

        L'Amour was writing adventure stories around WW2. He looked at a map and thought "that'd be a great place to hide a squad of Japanese fighter planes. Complete with a natural runway."

        After the story is published, the US Navy rolls into Kolombangara and finds a hidden airstrip right where he fictionally placed it.

        20/20 hindsight or Occam's razor? Choose your choice.

        1. adam 40 Silver badge

          Choose your choice?

          Occam's razor would have me whittling that extra word down to:

          "You choose"

    3. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Do we have enough gunboat drivers? Have they been retraining to drive petrol tankers?

    4. bigtimehustler

      The South China is not Chinese though. It is actually international water so anything can sail or submerge there.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Good job her imperial majesty's navy was there then.

        I understand that some colonials happened along as well ?

      2. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

        Well, it is international waters until China constructs a number of islands, claims them as sovereign territory, and then attemps to extend it's territorial waters. Won't fly at the UN or the International Maritime Court, but they refuse to acknowledge existing judgements, so what does that matter to them!

        That is partly why America, Australia and now the UK sail task forces around and overfly these new islands, and why China is so keen to build up it's own navy to try to stop this.

        What we could really do with is to repatriate manufacturing, and rob China of the sword it holds over all of our heads. Won't happen because of CO2 emissions and the higher prices that would need to be charged to build things where they are needed.

  3. HildyJ Silver badge
    Coat

    They must have been using . . .

    The Tesla navigation system.

  4. Kev99 Silver badge

    Was James Bond helping navigate?

    1. RegGuy1 Silver badge

      No, he was 'seeing to' a female crew member at the time.

      1. stiine Silver badge

        "a"??? surely more than 'a' female crew member...

  5. Sleep deprived

    Hitting a container?

    Do subs hover so close to the sea buttom?

    1. maddoxx

      Re: Hitting a container?

      Sure, when they sleep, they need to rest somewhere. to avoid nuclear burnout.

    2. ThatOne Silver badge

      Re: Hitting a container?

      > Do subs hover so close to the sea buttom?

      AFAIK not, the principle is that they are totally blind*, and navigate by dead reckoning using very detailed secret maps of the seabed. Since those aren't that precise, you normally take a safety margin in case the feature you trying to avoid isn't really where it was supposed to be. (I personally have met a coral reef in the Caribbean which was 5 miles from where it should had been according to the nautical charts...)

      * Subs are totally blind because they can't use any active means (like sonar) to explore their surroundings, and if you're deep enough there is no light to see things, so there is no looking around. I definitely wouldn't want to be in one navigating close to the coasts...

      1. Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: Hitting a container?

        > if you're deep enough there is no light to see things, so there is no looking around

        Another thing is that the thick steel pressure hull, and then the surrounding casing, are both pretty much 100% opaque to visible light, even if there's a lot of it outside. Naval subs don't have portholes.

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Devil

          Re: Hitting a container?

          subs haven't been double hulled for a VERY long time. Some of the earlier ones were, but the idea was quickly abandoned. Basically a sub hull is a long metal tube made of high tensile strength steel (or perhaps titanium in the case of Russian boats) with frames but no strakes, all welded together (no plates or rivets). Nothing like old WW2 sub movies anyway. A bit like 'Hunt for Red October' and 'Crimson Tide' though.

          1. Danny 14

            Re: Hitting a container?

            akulas are double hulled. they are modern.

          2. SImon Hobson Silver badge

            Re: Hitting a container?

            subs haven't been double hulled for a VERY long time

            Maybe not, but substantial parts fwd and aft, and on top, do have a casing that's separate to and outside of the pressure hull. Pressure hulls are circular - ever noticed that subs tend to have a flat top to them ?

            If you did "drive into something" then the fwd casing would take a considerable battering but hopefully that would act like a crumple zone and avoid damage to the pressure hull end dome.

        2. Tom 7 Silver badge

          Re: Hitting a container?

          Naval subs don't have portholes? This one nearly did!

        3. ThatOne Silver badge

          Re: Hitting a container?

          > the thick steel pressure hull

          Well, they could have cameras bolted on the hull, or use the already existing periscope.

          I wouldn't expect windows, because of the hull integrity of course, and also simply because windows work both ways: One would see them from afar in the general darkness.

          1. Cederic Silver badge

            Re: Hitting a container?

            I guess without an artificial light source the usefulness of passive detectors (cameras or otherwise) is limited when you're well under water. 20 feet, sure, but at several knots you need a few hundred yards visibility to have a meaningful chance to avoid a potential obstruction.

            Add to that how seldom submarines (intentionally) go near the sea floor and it's easy to see why they tend not to bother with such things.

            Still, design something that can provide insight into obstructions 500 yards in front and the Navy will no doubt be very interested in talking with you - enough fishing nets and other debris floating around to justify some investment.

            1. ShadowDragon8685

              Re: Hitting a container?

              X-Rays seem to go through water quite well. Sadly T-Rays do not, but I wonder if there is some way to use an X-Ray emitter in a manner analogous to a radar or sonar set; blast the X-Rays out, record return (do they return when they hit something like, say, sand, or a shipwreck, or a ship?) and get fix that way.

      2. normal1

        Re: Hitting a container?

        Found Capt 2nd rank Borodin... /s

        /how is Montana?

      3. Pete4000uk

        Re: Hitting a container?

        Cant they just open a window and look out?

      4. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

        Re: Hitting a container? @ThatOne

        It's a shame they don't have WSKRS.

      5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Hitting a container?

        "and if you're deep enough there is no light to see things"

        That never seemed to be a problem for Richard Basehart in the Seaview!

    3. EvilDrSmith

      Re: Hitting a container?

      My understanding is that shipping containers sometimes 'float' semi-submerged, depending on their contents; it seems to be speculation that the submarine hit a wreck or shipping container on the sea bed, it might have been (more speculation!) a container floating just below the surface.

      Too low in the water to be visually spotted even if they were looking through the periscope, and with no engine or other machinery, not picked up by passive sonar.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Hitting a container?

        My understanding is that shipping containers sometimes 'float' semi-submerged, depending on their contents

        that's interesting but I would not expect it to remain that way very long. As sea pressure increases, the container would compress; if/when ocean got inside the container, the stuff within the container would soak it up and/or compress. This would tend to make the whole thing less buoyant.

        now if it were in the PROCESS of sinking, then yeah, by random chance a sub could hit it at high speed and cause serious damage, and injury to the people inside.

        Subs generally do not go fast near the surface (fast enough to cause damage/injury as I perceive it would be in a collision). They DO go fast while deep sometimes, if the crew needs to get someplace. And as a sinking container gets deeper, it would actually get heavier and sink better. But there would be a time window when a collision is possible...

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Hitting a container?

          "if/when ocean got inside the container, the stuff within the container would soak it up and/or compress. "

          Depends what's in it. Lots of small items/packages with moulded polystyrene packaging or bubble wrap may well have a some level of buoyancy for a long time. Even a container full of LCD screens or TV will be mainly polystyrene packaging by volume.

      2. ThatOne Silver badge

        Re: Hitting a container?

        > shipping containers sometimes 'float' semi-submerged

        I can confirm this, having met one. It did float just under the surface, and we're lucky to have spotted it (fortunately it was painted white), else I wouldn't be here to talk about it... Seems it's pretty useful to keep constant lookout even if you're smack in the middle of the Atlantic...

        We stopped and examined the container, looking for a means to sink it before somebody else hits it: I guess a big cargo vessel might survive, but a sailing ship of any size would have no chance. Anyway, what kept it afloat just under the surface despite being full of water was that its inside was entirely lined with Styrofoam for isolation, and this was enough to keep it afloat, just under the surface. Since the Styrofoam was glued to the inside and covered by plywood, this container would keep floating forever, even if hit, until eventually some (big!) storm beached it.

        1. ShadowDragon8685

          Re: Hitting a container?

          Did you just haul it back ashore and slap a salvage lien on it?

      3. Ian Johnston Silver badge

        Re: Hitting a container?

        it might have been (more speculation!) a container floating just below the surface

        Those things are common boogey-men in the yachting world, but physically impossible. Containers are more compressible than water, so as soon as they submerge they are unstable and will head downwards, increasing their effective density more than the surrounding water as they go.

        The same goes for airships, by the way, which is why they all need to use aerodynamic lift to climb. The Hindenburg was a large wing, not a balloon.

        1. ThatOne Silver badge
          Unhappy

          Re: Hitting a container?

          > Those things are common boogey-men in the yachting world, but physically impossible

          Didn't you see my post just above? I met one, I even explain why it was still floating. Bogey men my eye. If we (40 feet wooden yacht) hadn't met it in bright daylight and spotted it before ramming it we would be statistics by now.

          (Didn't downvote you though.)

    4. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: Hitting a container?

      Do subs hover so close to the sea buttom?

      Not generally but if an operation required it they're usually capable of doing so without crashing into things.

      It's a fair bet they knew exactly where they were when it happened, and what the proper depth should be, etc..

      Or possibly they were just looking for something, unusually close to the sea bottom. "Found it!"

      NOT having a large submerged object on an existing chart (so that they avoid it) either means it's something mobile (like another sub) or "was put there" for some reason. A shipping container that had fallen from a surface ship is unlikely to be large enough to be a navigation hazard like that.

      And if it's large enough that people were actually injured when they crashed, it was a seriously HUGE object, WAY bigger than a container.

      [on my first underway, the sub struck another one during sea trials and had to go back to the shipyard to have its rudder repaired. I did not even feel it (I was asleep though)].

      As for fixing the sub, I bet they'll be able to fix it properly in the shipyard. The newest ones actually use modular construction (from what I've read anyway).

    5. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Hitting a container?

      Do subs hover so close to the sea buttom?

      Sometimes. If they're doing "secret" stuff like tapping an underwater cable or collecting a sensor or an "interesting" bit of wreckage. Then again, during WWII, there's many stories of subs gently settling on the bottom for various reasons like waiting for a target to get close or hiding from depth charges.

    6. Ian Johnston Silver badge

      Re: Hitting a container?

      Submarines don't go particularly deep. For example, a Trident sub can probably go down to 1000' or so ... but that's only twice it's length, so drawn to scale it's not very much.

    7. S4qFBxkFFg

      Re: Hitting a container?

      I talked to a submariner who said if it's diesel-electric, it's not really a problem to actually "land" on the seabed (assuming a "soft" bottom: i.e. sand not rock) but nuclear ones have coolant intakes and you want to try to avoid stuff getting sucked in (like silt or sand disturbed by the sub itself).

      Or maybe that's just the information for the public, and they do it all the time, who knows?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Roger the cabin boy dropped a tray of tea

    Seaman Staines had to wash his uniform

    Etc.

  7. Empire of the Pussycat

    Run silent, run deep, run into things

    <picture of fluffy kitten>

  8. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    How loud is crashing a sub?

    There must be some kind of stealthy active signal visualization for avoiding large objects.

    Spread-spectrum radar? Wouldn't get much resolution at frequencies that will pass through sea water but might see big things that would hurt to run into.

    Ultra-brief directional sonar pulses that can't be detected unless you know exactly when and where to listen for it?

    How about scouting drones? Give them loud sonar and telemetry signals so they can be spread across a very large area. Everyone will hear the drones but have no idea where the listening sub is. These patrols are all for show so might as well break out the disco lights and mirror ball.

    Leave the sub at home. Sharks with frickin lasers.

    1. maddoxx

      Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

      is it PDC - park distance control they failed to activate?

    2. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

      The principle with submarines these days is stealth. You're not supposed to know that they're there. That is why they can be a threat - you never know where they are.

      Loud sonar and telemetry signals is going to put the kibosh on that pretty quick.

      1. Arthur the cat Silver badge

        Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

        Loud sonar and telemetry signals is going to put the kibosh on that pretty quick.

        I wouldn't imagine the crash as they hit something helps either.

    3. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

      There must be some kind of stealthy active signal visualization for avoiding large objects.

      If you invent one, you'll end up a nice chunk of change and you and the family would probably have some serious protection from the military.

      1. ThatOne Silver badge
        Joke

        Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

        Hmm, lets think. What about a long white cane? The sub could examine its surroundings with it before taking a step forward...

        1. normal1

          Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

          if you put on curb feelers, you'll need fuzzy dice for the periscope.

          1. JSIM

            Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

            Trained electric eels.

            1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

              A dolphin named Darwin?

          2. ShadowDragon8685

            Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

            Submariners are a notoriously resourceful breed. I'm sure they can scrounge up fuzzy dice.

    4. This post has been deleted by its author

    5. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: How loud is crashing a sub?

      "Ultra-brief directional sonar pulses that can't be detected unless you know exactly when and where to listen for it?"

      Just one ping?

  9. Sgt_Oddball Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    You would think by now...

    They could manage some additional forms of sensing equipment. Magnetic anomaly arrays stuck out of the front and back.... Maybe a number of cameras with lights that can only penetrate a short distance and some ML guff to look for things big enough to warrant avoiding (but not bore the poor operator to death looking at floating hubris)?

    I mean, <Clarkson voice> how hard can it be? </Clarkson voice>.

    Maybe investigate water current changes when a vessel is coming close to another object, or.... Go the other way... Some long, flexible pipes off the front of the vessel and detect when they're deflected enough to be a possible collision...

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: You would think by now...

      Magnetic anomaly arrays stuck out of the front and back

      When you ARE a magnetic anomaly, its hard to detect other ones that are nearby...

      [having them on aircraft with non-magnetic construction seems to make the most sense].

      An object that emits no sound (and is not shadowing others) is simply difficult to "see" under water.

      But if I were to guess, it was something similar to a 'Crazy Ivan' maneuver (re 'Hunt for Red October').

      I _may_ have once seen a damaged submarine nose cone that looked as if it had been chopped by a propeller... or it could have been a really fat whale wut broke it. I do not believe it made the news, either. Fortunately its a bit like a car bumper to replace one. (they need to be nice and streamlined though to allow for higher speed without flow noises, so even minor damage and you need a new one).

      1. lnLog

        pedant says...

        "When you ARE a magnetic anomaly, its hard to detect other ones that are nearby..."

        Thats where the whole sub degausing system comes into its own.

      2. JSIM

        Re: You would think by now...

        Re: MAD non-magnetic construction. Can confirm this. Years ago they used the same brown stuff PCBs used to be made of for constructing various parts, especially structural parts.

  10. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

    MH370

    Fuselage/large fragment?

    Not meant to be flippant, but keeping an open mind. However, if the Americans were there looking for what the Chinese, being the active actors in that territory were up to, most probably they just found it - but then they would most likely keep quiet and put out that it was something else/elsewhere

    1. Tom 7 Silver badge

      Re: MH370

      I doubt any remnant of MH370 has enough mass or solidity to cause the damage this did.

  11. WilliamBurke
    Mushroom

    ... or how I learnt to love the torpedo

    Ever Given? You may find that if a military vessel of one nuclear power sinks a military vessel of another, one of them nuclear, the disruption might be a bit stronger than that of a stuck container ship. And "oops, it was an accident" may or may not be believed by the other side.

    (Yes, I know that the reactor of a nuclear submarine and a nuclear bomb are different things)

  12. NuffSed?
    Coat

    Just asking...

    What OS was running the subs' systems?

    Windows?

    Just asking...

    1. Joe W Silver badge

      Re: Just asking...

      There's no windows, nor are there portholes...

    2. Anomalous Cowturd
      Coat

      Re: Just asking...

      > What OS was running the subs' systems?

      Windows Bob Bob Bob.

    3. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Re: Just asking...

      Microsoft Periscopes 8

    4. Dagg

      Re: Just asking...

      Whoa, that brings back memories.

      Worked for Marconi in early 80's they had a specialised radiation hardened processor called a LOCUS that was designed for this sort of thing.

      Sod of a thing to work on, everyone just called it locust.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The truth...

    ... is the only thing we know will be in short supply given the location and possibilities. Foreign sub or sea mount - both likely. Given the damage and number of crew injured, it seems unlikely that a 20 to 40 ton submerged shipping container would cause such a jolt to a 7,000 ton boat.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can't fathom what's going on?

    maritime dot org / doc / fleetsub / sonar / chap9.htm

    SAN FRANCISCO NATIONAL PARK MARITIME ASSOCIATION

    9. ECHO-SOUNDING

    The depth of enemy waters in which our submarines patrol has been fairly well charted. Nevertheless, it will often be necessary to determine accurately how deep the water is beneath your keel. This is done on the NM gear by echo-sounding, which is merely echo-ranging with the ocean bottom as the reflecting surface.

    ...

    Important: Echo-sounding pings are likely to be picked up by the enemy.

    Do not take unnecessary risks. Return the signal interval switch to its center position as soon as the depth has been obtained.

    1. Tom 7 Silver badge

      Re: Can't fathom what's going on?

      EM waves have limited range underwater. I'm sure someone has some form where the power involved makes it invisible from 10s of meters.

      Oh yeh its called wifi!

  15. A random security guy

    The sub hit the Chinese real estate housing company that sank: Ever Grande

    You remember by Ever Given blocked the Suez Canal?

    Ever Grande : hold my beer. I can do better.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Honest question.. how was this not picked up on radar or sonar or whatever else?

    1. A random security guy

      Sonar can be heard by other ships, thereby giving away your location.

      1. BOFH in Training Bronze badge

        But the crash presumably created enough sound waves that it announced the location to everyone capable of listening anyway, lol.

  17. mevets

    Maybe a sandwich?

    I don't know why, my mind has a strong association between peanut butter sandwiches and US nuclear submarines. Could the submarine have hit an extraordinarily large peanut butter sandwich, perhaps containing some disc drives?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It could be part of the same phenomena that sunk 3 Disney films chances of screening permission in China. The gap was fulfilled by a CCP sponsored war epic "The Battle at Lake Changjin" about the Korean War. Cost $287 million - given the lower costs in China that would be like making a billion dollar film in Hollywood.

  19. Dagg

    Possible whale strike

    There may be a poor whale with one hell of a headache...

    Don't know exactly where they were or how deep in the south china sea but something like a male sperm whale can mass about 40 metric tons and dive to over 2000 m.

    They do range in the southern part of the south china sea and on the way down they would be silent as they only start echolocation when they start hunting.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Billions spent and you mean to tell us that you don't have eyes or better sonar to "see" up front?!?!?

  21. Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells Silver badge

    They really should have flashing warning lights and fake-V8 engine noises for safety reasons.

  22. x 7

    Beadwindow

    Beadwindow

  23. Rob Daglish Bronze badge

    Are we sure...

    ...it wasn't the lost continent of Atlantis rising from the Depths? I hear the High Priest is quite the man for Quoits!

    1. BOFH in Training Bronze badge

      Re: Are we sure...

      Maybe it's the worm thingys from the Deep Rising movie.

      As I recall it was set in South China Sea.

  24. davetalis

    Captain Ramius would be disappointed

    Someone in that submarine wasn't doing a good job of clearing their baffles...

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