The Argentinian Navy official also stressed that there is no established time limit for the submarine’s search.
“I can say that there is no clear certainty about the situation with the submarine, nothing can be said. We are trying to be respectful. Even though the search has already been continuing for 11 days, it could not be ruled out that they [the crew] might be in a situation of an extreme survival,” Balbi said at the press conference, as quoted the Todo Noticias broadcaster.
On Saturday, a brother of one of the submarine’s junior officers told Sputnik that the number of people on board of Argentina’s missing San Juan submarine allegedly exceeded the prescribed number as 44 were on board instead of prescribed 37 crew members.
Alleged Explosion Likely Caused by Hydrogen
“Considering the information on the explosion and the fact that there were no torpedoes on board, meaning that they could not explode, we could assume that an explosion could have happened due to the concentration of hydrogen. If hydrogen is the reason, we do not know why the concentration has occurred,” Balbi said at the press conference.
The ship's departure for the search zone was initially scheduled for Saturday but was postponed due to strong winds. The US mini-submarine could rescue up to 16 people at a time.
The San Juan submarine with a crew of 44 stopped responding and went missing on November 15, while en route from Ushuaia to Mar del Plata. The Navy said a likely explosion had been registered in the area close to where the last contact was made.