It was a fine Wednesday morning on 21st August when the scientists at the environmental monitoring station installed by GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research, Kiel, noticed an anomaly. There was no data transmitted and it felt like something is wrong with the machinery.
When it was reported to the center, they sent the divers to look for the problem. But when the divers reached the bottom of the ocean bed, they couldn’t find anything. The whole observatory weighed more than 1600 pounds, at a depth of 72 feet below. Apparently the machine was stolen. The divers did find shredded pieces of cable.
It is highly unlikely that a natural cause was behind this just looking at the condition of the remains. The observatory was connected with a cable to the monitoring station on the land. It helped in observing the salt level, temperature, oxygen, and several other important parameters.
Scientists fear data are lost with the observatory
Despite proper security measures being taken, such as the observatory was situated around 1.2 miles away from the shore and making the observatory zone as a no–entry zone, someone was able to get into it, without getting detected and took away such big machinery. Although financial loss measures up to $330,000, the scientists are more tensed and rightfully so for the data that had been lost. Although they are hopeful that new observatory will be installed but in the meantime, nothing is being monitored and this has never happened since 1957.
Although Boknis Eck Observatory was installed in 2016 only, police suspect the thieves that regularly dive under to steal the metals from the sunken ships and the observatory must have been stolen for the same purpose.
Right now the scientists in Kiel, Northern Germany are just hoping to get operational as fast as possible and still hoping for the hints, so they can get something out of this loss.
Security is also an issue with schools and with this theft coming up, those entrusted with keeping their students secure should prepare by using technological upgrades.