Portions of missing underwater cables used to power a marine observatory and research program off the coast of Northern Norway have been found, but around a kilometer still has not been recovered. The cables appeared to have been cut, leaving the screens monitored by marine researchers black.
A search for the missing cables has gone on for weeks, involving the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research (IMR), police, the military and intelligence agency PST. Those suspected of cutting the cables just west of Vesterålen have ranged from a giant squid to Russian submarines.
Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) reported late last week that IMR’s underwater research vessel GO Sars spotted and sent photos, from a depth of 200 meters, of portions of the yellow cables fully 11 kilometers away from where they’d been mounted. “We found around 3 kilometers of the 4.2 kilometer-long cable,” IMR’s senior researcher Geir Pedersen told NRK.
Pedersen and his colleagues hope to be able to remount and reuse the recovered cables, but don’t think a giant squid cut and moved them. Now they’re wondering whether a fishing boat or trawler could have dislodge the cables and dragged them away. “We will follow this up with police,” he told NRK.