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Some of the deadliest submarine accidents

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Some of the deadliest submarine accidents

The Associated Press
FILE- In this July 9, 1960 file photo provided by the U.S. Navy, the nuclear-powered submarine USS Thresher is launched at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine. The USS Thresher sank on April 10, 1963 while conducting routine maneuvers southeast of Cape Cod, Mass. The accident, which took the lives of all 129 men onboard, remains the deadliest peacetime submarine disaster in U.S. history. (U.S. Navy via AP, File)

Some of world's deadliest submarine disasters:

April 10, 1963: USS Thresher sinks while conducting maneuvers southeast of Massachusetts' Cape Cod, and the loss of all 129 men aboard remains the deadliest peacetime submarine disaster in U.S. history. The nuclear-powered attack submarine signals minor problems to a rescue ship before mechanical failure causes it to rapidly descend below crush depth and implode. The wreckage is found 8,400 feet down on the sea floor.

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Aug. 12, 2000: Russian nuclear submarine Kursk is rocked by two powerful explosions and sinks during naval maneuvers in the Barents Sea. Most of the 118 crew members are killed instantly, but 23 men flee to a rear compartment and wait for help. After Russian submersibles fail to open the escape hatch for a week, Norwegian divers open it within hours, but all 23 men are dead from suffocation. The accident is blamed on leaking torpedo fuel.

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May 21, 1968: USS Scorpion goes missing 400 miles southwest of the Azores islands in the Atlantic, with loss of all 99 crew on board. The wreckage of the nuclear-powered submarine is found five months later in more than 10,000 feet of water. The cause of the accident is believed to be an accidental torpedo battery activation or explosion.

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June 1939: British submarine HMS Thetis floods and sinks while conducting diving trials in Liverpool Bay with 103 men on board. The crew keeps the stern afloat for several hours, but only four sailors manage to escape and avoid suffocation or drowning.

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March 8, 1968: Soviet submarine K-129 armed with nuclear missiles sinks while on patrol in the Pacific, killing all 98 seamen on board. The wreckage is eventually found by USS Halibut northwest of Oahu at a depth of about 16,000 feet. There are suspicions it collided with an American submarine, but the U.S. Navy says the vessel suffered a catastrophic internal explosion.

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April 25, 2003: China's Ming 361 diesel-powered submarine is found in the Yellow Sea after a malfunction in the diesel engines during exercises consume the oxygen and suffocate all 70 men on board. State newspaper reports on the incident mark the first time China discloses a fatal submarine accident.

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April 11, 1970: Soviet November-class nuclear submarine catches fire and sinks in the Bay of Biscay, north of Spain, killing 52 sailors. Some of the crew escape, although the Soviet Union never releases the exact number of survivors.

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April 7, 1989: Soviet nuclear submarine K-278 Komsomolets sinks in the Norwegian Sea after a fire causes complete loss of power. Some of the crew flee as the vessel goes down and are picked up by a fishing boat, but 42 of the 69 sailors aboard die.

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Dec. 17, 1927: U.S. submarine S-4 sinks after being rammed by the Coast Guard vessel Paulding off Provincetown, Massachusetts. The crew of 40 dies, including six who survives in the torpedo room for more than a day but run out of oxygen as storms hamper rescue effort.

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Sources: http://www.naval-technology.com and Associated Press reporting.

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