More than four kilometers of an underwater cable that allows surveillance of subsea activity off Northern Norway remain missing, but police have dropped their investigation into the mysterious disappearance last year. Investigators now suggest it was simply torn away by a trawler.
Newspaper Dagens Næringliv (DN) first reported on the missing cable last autumn, and on the efforts to recover it and find out what happened to it. Some portions of the cable were found but not nearly enough to quickly restore underwater surveillance.
Prosecutor Ronny Jørgensen of the Troms Police District told state broadcaster NRK late last week that its investigation “shows that the cable most probably was cut by a fishing vessel, which ended up dragging it away. The 4.3 kilometer-long cable provided researchers with valuable information and pictures from the depths of the sea off Vesterålen in Northern Norway, and could also occasionally offer sensitive photos of submarine activity.
That led to speculation that the cable was intentionally cut, perhaps as early as April 2021. It wasn’t until a remotely operated underwater drone was sent down to the cable area in September that its pictures revealed it had been torn.