Terrible abandoned passenger plane sits at the bottom of the Red Sea

(CNN) – Getting into this unexpected shape on the bottom of the ocean is enough to take your breath away—so it’s a good deed that you’ll probably have a tank full of breath on your back.

The venerable old Lockheed Martin L1011 Tristar airplane, with its three engines, mounted on the wings and tail fin, would be a sight to behold in the air or on land, let alone beneath the surface of the Red Sea, among fish and coral

The abandoned jet, sunk in 2019 to create an artificial reef to encourage marine life, is photographed by American underwater photographer Brett Holzer in a series of images that capture the eerie spectacle created by this aquatic airliner. Huh.

The three-engined Lockheed Martin Tristar flew for commercial airlines in the 1980s and ’90s.

Brett Holzer/Deep Blue Dive Center

According to Holzer, the jet has now become a haven for wreck searchers and underwater photographers.

First registered in the 1980s and seeing service for several airlines, according to Planespotters.net, Royal Jordanian, Portugal’s TAP Air and Sweden’s Novair, following a final stint with Luzair, another Portuguese carrier, It was abandoned in the early 2000s.

After being parked for years and apparently forgotten at King Hussein International Airport near the coast of the Red Sea, the plane was taken to Jordan’s Aqaba in a bid to encourage dive tourism and coral development, according to Jordan’s news agency Petra. was drowned in the bay.

Holzer says it lies at a depth of 15 to 28 meters (50–92 ft), with the plane’s tail at the deepest tip.

“The cockpit is the shallowest part of the wreck and faces the beach at about 13 meters,” Holzer told CNN Arabic.

floating in an airplane

Divers can explore the cockpit and cabin.

Divers can explore the cockpit and cabin.

Brett Holzer/Deep Blue Dive Center

Professional divers can enter the wreck through two doors behind the cockpit.

Inside the Tristar’s fuselage, the middle row seats have been removed to allow better access for divers, but otherwise the jet is surprisingly well protected.

“Scuba divers can go up to the last two exits, which are 28 meters deep,” says Holzer. “Or they can exit through the middle doors, which are about 20 meters deep.”

The photographer says the cockpit, seat rows on either side, toilets and lanes are still there, allowing divers to float around mostly intact commercial airliners.

After three years in the water, the plane’s wings now shelter many soft corals. The fuselage is surrounded by giant sponges populated by a variety of marine life.

“It’s not unusual for octopuses to feed near coral heads,” says Holzer. Puffer fish can also be seen.

The real thrill, they say, is the uniqueness of discovering a passenger plane on the ocean floor.

“This adventure gives a realistic diving experience inside a real commercial aircraft,” says Holzer.

their underwater photos have been hit on instagramSome of his followers are now planning their trip to the Gulf of Aqaba to see the wreck.

However, Holzer stresses that this adventure may not be for everyone.

Because of its depth, he says, divers will need to be a fully qualified professional. He also recommends making reservations early, as the trip requires a boat.