Buenos Aires – Hopes of finding survivors have been revived after Argentina’s navy received what could be distress calls from a missing submarine with 44 crew aboard.
There had been no contact with the ARA San Juan since early Wednesday, according to the navy, prompting Buenos Aires to launch an air and sea search with help from countries including Brazil, Britain, Chile and the United States.
The entire search area has been scoured by ships and aircraft, despite storm conditions that complicated the effort, said Argentine navy spokesperson Enrique Balbi.
Yet finally seven satellite-transmitted signals believed to be part of the vessel trying to resume contact were detected, the defence ministry said.
“Right now, we are working to pinpoint the exact location of what is emitting the signals,” presuming that it could be the missing sub, the ministry said.
Brazil, Britain, Chile, the United States and Uruguay took part in the aerial side of the search, and Washington said it was sending rescue help.
The California-based Undersea Rescue Command was deploying two independent rescue assets – including a pressurised rescue module – to help in the hunt for the missing sub.