A SHIPWRECK dubbed the Titanic of the Alps is set to be raised from its watery grave after being left abandoned for 90 years.
The Säntis steamship will be brought to the surface after the rescue mission 700ft below the water was finally approved.
Schiffsbergeverein via Pen NewsThe Säntis steamship on Lake Constance over 90 years ago[/caption]
The ship was sent to a watery grave in 1993 and was left abandoned until nowSchiffsbergeverein via Pen News
Schiffsbergeverein via Pen NewsThe ship sits 700ft below Lake Constance but has been remarkably preserved with the writing even remaining intact[/caption]
Both mammoth vessels slowly entered the grave with their huge sterns rising out of the water as they sank.
The pair also share a number of technical similarities in how they were built and used such as both using a unique three-cylinder steam engine.
But unlike arguably the most well known shipwreck on the planet, the Säntis will be rising from the ashes to make a triumphant return to shore.
The Swiss authorities gave the Ship Salvage Association permission to pull her back up and raise her safely onto the neighbouring land later on in March.
Bordering, , and , Lake Constance has kept the ship in a brilliant condition ever since she sank.
Silvan Paganini, the association’s president said: “It’s in really good condition.
“We have here a freshwater lake, it’s really deep at 210 metres, it’s very dark there, it’s not much oxygen, so it’s really good conserved.
“You can still see the paint on the side and read the letters on the side of the ship.”
Once the Säntis is salvaged from the dark depths of the lake she will be officially recognised as the oldest surviving steamship from Lake Constance.
Named after the Alpine mountain, the Säntis could carry up to 400 passengers and spent 40 years sailing across Lake Constance.
Sitting at an impressive 158ft long, the ship was always regarded as a trusted transporter vessel.
Despite the Titanic similarities in the look and design, the Säntis sank after it was plagued with troubling money issues.
Paganini said the ship was the first one to transfer from a coal powered engine to an oil-driven one – something that ultimately caused it’s tragic downfall.
He continued: “The ship was sunk because it was not used, and not needed anymore.
“It was a big crisis in 1933, and they took away all that they could still use – so, for example, the whole wooden deck they removed because they could burn the wood to make heat.
“Also some of the doors for example – they were found in cellars in the village here. Then they had still the steel left, and in the crisis steel had no price.”
The price of demolishing the Säntis was 10 times more than the value of completely scrapping her so the captain decided to scuttle her in May 1933.
The crew purposely sunk the great ship and she was all but forgotten about by the end of WW2.
But after being rediscovered in 2013, the Säntis was involved in an impressive £182,000 crowdfunding project to raise the ship to the surface.
Mr Paganini said: “The cheapest solution is lifting bags. They’re like balloons which work underwater, you fill them with air and then they lift.
“We plan to do the first lift at the end of March, from 210m to 12m, and then in April, the final lift from 12m to the surface.”
The Säntis will then be restored at the nearby shipyard in Romanshorn – where she was previously renovated in 1898.
Mr Paganini said: “We want to present to the public what we have here; what a monument we have from our predecessors. That is the main goal.”
What happened to the Titanic?
THE doomed ship sank after hitting an iceberg on its voyage to New York.
The ship was the largest afloat in the world at the time and was built by ship makers Harland and Wolff in Belfast.
The Titanic went down only about 715 miles from the port of Halifax, and 1,250 miles from New York City, with fewer than three days left on its trip.
Ship lookout Frederick Fleet spotted the iceberg ahead of the Titanic late on April 14, 1912, and warned the crew.
But it was already too late despite First Officer William Murdoch ordering the ship to be steered around the iceberg.
The starboard side of the Titanic collided with the iceberg, denting the hull and causing the seams to buckle and separate.
The ship quickly began sinking bow-first, causing panic on board.
It has been left sitting 12,500ft below the surface ever since.
It has been reported that the wreckage could disappear completely by 2030, all because of “hungry” bacteria in the ocean.
The wreck initially stayed well preserved because of how deep in the ocean it is, but scientists don’t think the remains of the ship have much time left.
The ship was found lying in two main pieces about 2,000 feet apart.
In 2012, the Titanic wreckage was named a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Another abandoned shipwreck with £16billion worth of treasure is about to be recovered from the sea 300 years after it was sunk during a battle with a British squadron.
The location of the ship is a complete secret with rumours suggesting only the very top members of Colombian parliament know the exact coordinates.
Across the UK, 52 different shipwrecks are protected and preserved with only five of these being allowed to be seen.
Only divers with a license under the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973 can go searching for the lost goods and explore what lies beneath the sea.
Schiffsbergeverein via Pen NewsThe ship was purposely sunk after it turned out to be cheaper than ripping it apart and selling off the metals and wood[/caption]
Schiffsbergeverein via Pen NewsThe shipwreck was involved in an impressive £182,000 crowdfunding project to bring it back to the surface[/caption]
PEN NewsThe ship was dubbed the Titanic of the Alps after it faced a similar fate[/caption]
Silvan Paganini said the ship will be first lifted up at the end of March and then again in April until she is back on landSchiffsbergeverein via Pen News
PEN NewsThe Säntis will be restored at a nearby shipyard in Romanshorn to restore it to its former beauty[/caption]Leave a comment