Imagine that you’re swimming out into your local lake. You’re a capable swimmer, you know this body of water like the back of your hand, and you feel confident while athletically stroking through water enveloped by the early morning mist. You decide to dive underwater for a bit—you know, for fun—and that’s when you see it: the shadowy silhouette of something huge, rusted, and covered in seaweed. You panic, rise to the surface, and swim to the shore. Trembling. Terrified.

What even was that?! That, my dear Pandas, was but a taste of submechanophobia, the fear of fully or partially submerged man-made objects, from sunken ships and propellers to sculptures and buildings. The r/submechanophobia subreddit, a vast community of 375k people, is a place to explore that deep, lurking fear in photo format.

Let’s plunge in, shall we? Remember to upvote the pics that scared the bejesus outta ya as you’re swimming through this list. We’d also love to hear your thoughts about the photos, so if you’re brave enough, you can dive to the very bottom and drop us a line in the comment section.

One of the moderators of the 'Submechanophobia' subreddit, redditor Pubocyno, gave us a glimpse into the exciting underwater currents of the community, shared their take on tackling our fears, and revealed the very interesting origin of the phobia itself. Pubocyno told Bored Panda that they're actually a very active wreck diver in their free time! What's more, they create detailed shipwreck maps.

"I like to spend much time underwater. There is this sense of awe when you discover underwater wrecks for the first time, a little bit of excitement and a little bit of terror—not to forget the sense of history, especially in those wrecks you know have had casualties," Pubocyno said that even though they don't have submechanophobia themselves, they nonetheless have a "great respect" for all things underwater. You'll find the moderator's other insights deeper into the article, dear Readers.

Bored Panda also reached out to Alastair Bailey, a DSD Divemaster who has done a whopping 500 dives while working at the Byron Bay Dive Centre in Australia. Check out what he had to say below as well.

#1

Underwater Shark Statue At Lake Neuchâtel

Underwater Shark Statue At Lake Neuchâtel

1091drawde Report

TmKhr
Community Member
1 month ago

I probably wouldn't swim ever again after seeing that so close

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#2

Serpent D'océan In Saint-Brevin-Les-Pins, France

Serpent D'océan In Saint-Brevin-Les-Pins, France

arbalm Report

Pascal Oudot
Community Member
1 month ago

Open-air work of art, the Ocean Serpent with 135 vertebrae 130 meters long, produced in 2012 by Chinese artist Huang Yong Ping, appears to the rhythm of the tides north of Saint-Brevin on the foreshore, at the tip of Nez-de-Chien.

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#3

This Used To Be A Boat, Now It’s A Island

This Used To Be A Boat, Now It’s A Island

TedHardy_ Report

Lauren Caswell
Community Member
1 month ago

🎶I am a boat, I am an iiiiiiisland🎶

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The ‘Submechanophobia’ subreddit will be celebrating its 8th birthday on July 10, so if you’re a fan of the uncomfortable photos they post, drop by, say ‘hi,’ and congratulate them. Just… don’t forget your diving gear, powerful waterproof flashlight, and harpoon. Just in case the underwater objects are haunted or decide that now’s the perfect time to come alive.

Moderator Pubocyno is very dedicated to the subreddit. They do their best to find a bit more about the shipwrecks that get posted on r/submechanophobia and if they feel satisfied that they've got the right information, they'll add it to one of their shipwreck maps. Pubocyno has made six maps so far and shared with Bored Panda the North European version which you can see in all of its glory right here. Trust us, it's worth taking a peek.

#4

After 2300 Years Underwater, A Cache Of Ancient Relics Have Been Rediscovered Off The Coast Of Thonis-Heraclion In Egypt. They’ve Been Waiting, Watching

After 2300 Years Underwater, A Cache Of Ancient Relics Have Been Rediscovered Off The Coast Of Thonis-Heraclion In Egypt. They’ve Been Waiting, Watching

CenizaRey Report

Ileana Sky Aviles
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow cool!

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#5

Venice Canal Giant Hands

Venice Canal Giant Hands

YungxAkimbo Report

Claira Bestul
Community Member
1 month ago

I really like this one

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#6

This Statue Of Poseidon In Spain

This Statue Of Poseidon In Spain

yammsandasideofguac Report

Soap
Community Member
1 month ago

That perfectly timed wave saved BP the work of censoring a statue ;)

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Pubocyno was kind enough to share their take on dealing with phobias like submechanophobia. The moderators actually have very high standards and strict rules for the content that gets posted so that it doesn't trigger a reaction in anyone who is afraid of submerged man-made objects. "we are not about shock content," they said.

"When dealing with any sorts of phobia, the important must be understanding why you are afraid, not necessarily what you are afraid of, although they two can be connected. As always, proper mental health workers are to be recommended instead of the advice of strangers on the internet if someone experiences serious problems," the moderator detailed. "To support those who are haunted by these sort of images, we crack down on staged or otherwise unreal content and demand posts have some sort of cohesive title."

#7

Hurricane Harvey. French Street In Lumberton, Tx. 9/3/2017

Hurricane Harvey. French Street In Lumberton, Tx. 9/3/2017

Axeljurgens Report

TmKhr
Community Member
1 month ago

Now called French River

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#8

Maryland National Harbor Statue 'The Awakening'

Maryland National Harbor Statue 'The Awakening'

Consistent_Bid_7501 Report

Steve Barnett
Community Member
1 month ago

'I only asked Cthulhu for the time'. Boy, he has issues'

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#9

Retired NYC Subway Car Dumped Off The Coast As An Artificial Reef

Retired NYC Subway Car Dumped Off The Coast As An Artificial Reef

R3dSh1ft_706 Report

Friday
Community Member
1 month ago

This would be so cool to explore

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The moderator also gave Bored Panda a glance at the subreddit's history. The current moderators weren't present when r/submechanophobia was founded and they don't really have any communication with the community's creators. According to Pubocyno, the original founders thought that the idea to create a subreddit about submechanophobia was a good one and, once the community "gathered too much steam," they left to pursue other projects.

"Interestingly enough, we are unable to find mentions of the term 'submechanophobia' that predates the subreddit (2013), so although we have no proof, we like to think we were the instigator of the term. The internet has redefined the term a bit differently than we use it in-house, however," the moderator noted that the subreddit may very well have created the term itself that then spread to other corners of the net.

A part of submechanophobia is that people are scared that they’ll be sunk into the man-made objects or that dead bodies or even dangerous creatures could suddenly appear out of them. What’s more, some people are scared that the objects themselves might be haunted by ghosts or spirits. It’s easy to laugh at this when it’s sunny and we’re on dry land though, isn’t it?

#10

A “Ghost Village” Resurfacing In Italy

A “Ghost Village” Resurfacing In Italy

carriethefairyyy Report

Soap
Community Member
1 month ago

I WANNA GO SEE ANYONE COMING WITH? I GOT SNACKS

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#11

Interior Of Shipwreck In Lake Superior

Interior Of Shipwreck In Lake Superior

kikislidr Report

ADHORTATOR
Community Member
1 month ago

the cups are still in the shelf....

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#12

Dragon Sculpture In The Lake Of Neuchâtel, Switzerland

Dragon Sculpture In The Lake Of Neuchâtel, Switzerland

Av3le Report

Shelp
Community Member
1 month ago

The lake of Neuchâtel seems to have some interesting sculptures in it

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Meanwhile, DSD Divemaster Alastair told Bored Panda that he personally had no fears when he first started diving. For him, it's all about putting his trust in his gear. "For me, it was just having faith in the equipment. Same as anything, you trust a microwave won't blow up in your face, or your car will start. Yeah, accidents happen but as long as you do everything correctly then you minimize those risks," he said.

I was interested to find out about the scariest moments that the diver faced underwater. According to Alastair, he's had a couple of scary incidents, but nothing too bad overall. "I had a couple of people lying about their air when I first started guiding people. For me, it was scary because I didn't think people would be that stupid. Running out of air puts everyone in that group in a dangerous and stupid position," he put it bluntly that honesty is always the best policy when it comes to diving. And even a single person can endanger the entire group.

#13

The Front Of The Titanic

The Front Of The Titanic

GrekkoPlef Report

Watching
Community Member
1 month ago

They say it will be totally gone in a matter of years.

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#14

The Baltimore Harbor Tunnel Today. Ignore The Fact That You Are Already Driving Underwater. Drive Into The Underwater Water

The Baltimore Harbor Tunnel Today. Ignore The Fact That You Are Already Driving Underwater. Drive Into The Underwater Water

DarkBlue222 Report

Foxxy (The Original)
Community Member
1 month ago

I would be having a full blown panic attack.

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#15

Silver Islet Mine Shafts Near Thunder Bay On

Silver Islet Mine Shafts Near Thunder Bay On

justjbweldit Report

TmKhr
Community Member
1 month ago

I wonder what's down there

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"I have had a person start vomiting underwater while guiding a group and other stupid behavior or panicked divers, but you train and get taught how to deal with those things which makes it more manageable. I have never had a gear failure, ripped hose, broken regulator, or anything, so all in all pretty lucky," the DSD Divemaster revealed that he's personally only had to deal with human error, not gear failure. And it's that particular human element that can lead to some very frightening moments.

However, it's not all human errors and silly mistakes underwater—diving is absolutely fascinating and you get to see some spectacles underwater. DSD Divemaster Alastair shared with Bored Panda some of the coolest moments he's seen during his dives. "I had a humpback whale swim over us which was pretty awesome," he said, adding that watching octopi is also "awesome" and one of his favorite things to do. "And diving with manta rays is always stunning. Unfortunately, I have never found any treasure, but I have found some shark's teeth."

#16

Diving In A Sunken Plane

Diving In A Sunken Plane

Quinnpill19 Report

Eirik Johnsbråten
Community Member
1 month ago

Where are all the seats?

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#17

Many People Requested More Photos On My Original Post About The Last House Of Holland Island. So Here Are A Few More That I Find Unsettling...

Many People Requested More Photos On My Original Post About The Last House Of Holland Island. So Here Are A Few More That I Find Unsettling...

Fun-Independence-282 Report

ƒιѕн
Community Member
1 month ago

This is long gone now, collapsed in 2010. That little skid loader is even still there.

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#18

Jet Star, A Rollercoaster In New Jersey That Was Literally Blown Into The Ocean During Hurricane Sandy

Jet Star, A Rollercoaster In New Jersey That Was Literally Blown Into The Ocean During Hurricane Sandy

reddit.com Report

Steve Barnett
Community Member
1 month ago

Safety check: Cease operations immediately, multiple injuries expected.

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Let’s face it, most of us have at least one phobia in our lives. Some might be secret, others will be well known to our closest friends and family members. For instance, I’ve got acrophobia or the fear of heights. I know it’s irrational. I know that it’s usually silly for me to panic. But when I end up in a very high place, I’m terrified. Especially if my friends are doing dumb things like leaning over the edges just to annoy me. Paradoxically, I absolutely love flying.

So considering that we’ve got our own phobias to deal with, submechanophobia doesn’t seem all that silly. After all, it’s one thing to look at some photos of submerged objects from the safety of our own homes, schools, or offices; it’s a completely different ball game to be underwater, in the silence, and see a shadow rising out of the depths. It’s eerie. It’s scary. And I’m betting that some Pandas (me included) will be having nightmares about this in the days to come.

#19

German U-Boat Spotted From The Air

German U-Boat Spotted From The Air

KingNeptune767 Report

Sascha Dix
Community Member
1 month ago

The paper with the diagram is a reflection on the plane's window, were the photo has been made.

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#20

What A Submarine Escape Training Tower Looks Like

What A Submarine Escape Training Tower Looks Like

Dracula24 Report

Donkey boi
Community Member
1 month ago

Looks like of of those rock crystals.

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#21

Swimming Off The Side Of A Container Ship Seems Like A Big Nope. Found This On Instagram A Few Days Ago

Swimming Off The Side Of A Container Ship Seems Like A Big Nope. Found This On Instagram A Few Days Ago

durbn Report

Friday
Community Member
1 month ago

I’m petrified of dark water, I need to be able to see the bottom when swimming

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The fear of submerged man-made objects is closely linked to thalassophobia, the fear of deep bodies of water, from the ocean and the sea to lakes and even pools. If you’ve got thalassophobia, you could be scared of being in deep bodies of water, afraid of how vast and empty the ocean is, frightened of waves or creatures living in the water, or even scared to get too far away from the shore.

Part of this fear could be explained by our evolution (i.e. human beings don’t breathe underwater and can’t survive while on water without a lot of help), however, researchers are still unsure of the precise causes of thalassophobia.

#22

It Seems People Enjoyed My Last Post- Here Is Another One I Took Of The Coast Of O’ahu, Hawaii, Where A Tourist Submarine Came Upon As Out Of The Void While We Were Diving...

It Seems People Enjoyed My Last Post- Here Is Another One I Took Of The Coast Of O’ahu, Hawaii, Where A Tourist Submarine Came Upon As Out Of The Void While We Were Diving...

lindirofkells Report

Loralie Chase
Community Member
1 month ago

there are tourist submarines?

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#23

131 Ft Deep Swimming Pool In Padua, Italy. That “Landing Pad” At The Bottom Especially Freaks Me Out

131 Ft Deep Swimming Pool In Padua, Italy. That “Landing Pad” At The Bottom Especially Freaks Me Out

jennasky Report

Suzanne Haigh
Community Member
1 month ago

Swimming or diving pool?

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#24

In 2016 Riot Games Commissioned An Artificial Reef Of Their Character Nautilus And Placed It In The Ocean Of Brisbane, Australia. He Now Looks Like This

In 2016 Riot Games Commissioned An Artificial Reef Of Their Character Nautilus And Placed It In The Ocean Of Brisbane, Australia. He Now Looks Like This

bluebreeze52 Report

Donkey boi
Community Member
1 month ago

It's like those game adds: Lv10 vs Lv100

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Some of the ways to treat thalassophobia and submechanophobia include applying cognitive behavioral therapy, systemically desensitizing the patient to their fears, using exposure therapy, and even using medication if the symptoms are very strong and persistent.

A combination of all approaches seems to work best. What’s more, treating the phobia in question is best done in childhood, before it takes root... and drags you down to the underwater abyss.

#25

Church Of Potosi, Drowned Then Reappeared

Church Of Potosi, Drowned Then Reappeared

beachplank Report

Soap
Community Member
1 month ago

:o

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#26

Carnival Cruise Ships Being Scrapped

Carnival Cruise Ships Being Scrapped

ThatSexyLightskin Report

ariscari
Community Member
1 month ago

This looks like two friends holding up their drunk buddy and taking a selfie

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#27

A Sunken Ship Called "World Discoverer" Before And After It Sunk

A Sunken Ship Called "World Discoverer" Before And After It Sunk

TheDepressedOne1 Report

Donkey boi
Community Member
1 month ago

I prefer it after the makeover.

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#28

An Offshore Oil Rig Which Drifted To The Coast Of The Isle Of Lewis Due To Extreme Weather In 2016

An Offshore Oil Rig Which Drifted To The Coast Of The Isle Of Lewis Due To Extreme Weather In 2016

bdemin Report

Iggy
Community Member
1 month ago

Finders keepers!

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#29

Water Reservoir In Emmendingen, Bw, Germany

Water Reservoir In Emmendingen, Bw, Germany

Trizocbs Report

denzoren
Community Member
1 month ago

I can't put a pin on it but something about this scares the hell out of me.

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#30

Swimming Pool Aboard A Decommissioned Soviet Typhoon Class Submarine

Swimming Pool Aboard A Decommissioned Soviet Typhoon Class Submarine

BigCheemus Report

Donkey boi
Community Member
1 month ago

Sorry?? Swimming pool in a submarine?

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Note: this post originally had 118 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.