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Close shave for Las Vegas billionaire who turned down discounted tickets for doomed trip on sub to Titanic wreck

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US billionaire Jay Bloom said he and his son were offered a chance to take part in the trip, but it was called off in May due to inclement weather.

The Titan submersible imploded last week. Picture: OceanGate Expeditions/Reuters

JAY Bloom, a Las Vegas-based billionaire, claimed in a Facebook post that he was given reduced tickets to go on the now-imploded Titan with his son but declined the offer because of a schedule issue.

Bloom was promised the discounted tickets at $150,000 (R1.8 million) by OceanGate’s Stockton Rush, who died on the Titan.

“So, I decided to share some of my texts with Stockton Rush, the CEO and founder of OceanGate, the company that built and operated the Titan submarine that we’ve all been following over the last week,” Bloom said on Facebook.

In February, Rush offered Bloom and his son a chance to join him on the Titanic voyage which was supposed to take place in May but due to inclement weather, the May dives were cancelled with the dive being rescheduled for 18 June, the day the submersible went missing.

Bloom went on to say that although he was concerned about the Titan’s safety. Rush had told him that, “while there’s obviously risk, it’s way safer than flying in a helicopter or even scuba diving”.

“There hasn’t been even an injury in a non-military submarine in 35 years.”

Bloom revealed that he did not participate in the Titan journey because “due to scheduling, we couldn’t go until next year”.

The seats intended for Bloom and his son went to Shahzada Dawood and his 19-year-old son, Suleman Dawood, two of the other three who lost their lives on this excursion. The fifth occupant was Hamish Harding.

A deep-sea submersible carrying five people on a voyage to the Titanic wreck suffered a “catastrophic implosion” that killed everyone aboard, U.S. Coast Guard officials say. Graphic shows timeline of the incident and parts of the submersible found in the debris field on the sea floor.

According to screenshot images of a text conversation shared by Bloom, a worried friend investigated and cautioned Bloom’s son about the hazards of the expedition. As a consequence, Bloom’s son revealed his fear of going.

Bloom reacted to Rush’s description of the friend’s fear of a giant squid or sperm whale attack as “uninformed” by labelling some of the friend’s worries as “really stupid stuff”.

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