Indonesia’s navy on Saturday said items were found from a missing submarine, indicating the vessel with 53 crew members and passengers had sunk and cracked open, and that there was no hope of finding survivors, according to media reports. Military chief Hadi Tjahjanto said the presence of an oil slick as well as the discovery of debris near the location of KRI Nanggala 402′s last dive on Wednesday off the island of Bali were clear proof the vessel had sunk. Indonesia earlier considered the vessel to be only missing, the Associated Press reported on Saturday.
Navy Chief Yudo Margono told a press conference in Bali, “If it’s an explosion, it will be in pieces. The cracks happened gradually in some parts when it went down from 300 meters to 400 meters to 500 meters… If there was an explosion, it would be heard by the sonar.”
The navy previously said it believes the submarine sank to a depth of 600-700 meters (2,000-2,300 feet), much deeper than its collapse depth of 200 meters (655 feet), at which point water pressure would be greater than the hull could withstand. The cause of the disappearance was still uncertain. The navy had previously said an electrical failure could have left the submarine unable to execute emergency procedures to resurface.
Margono said that in the past two days, searchers found parts of a torpedo straightener, a grease bottle believed to be used to oil the periscope, debris from prayer rugs and a broken piece from a coolant pipe that was refitted on the submarine in South Korea in 2012. “With the authentic evidence we found believed to be from the submarine, we have now moved from the ‘sub miss’ phase to ‘sub sunk,’” Margono said at the press conference, in which the found items were displayed.