Cruise boat crashes, captain suspected of negligence Wednesday, February 08, 2012 By Hannah K. Field, senior staff writer
On Monday, Jan. 16, the luxury cruise ship Costa Concordia crashed while sailing the coast of Italy. The fact that only one side of the ship held lifeboats caused chaos among the 4,200 passengers that we on board the ship. Eleven people have been found dead, but 21 are still missing, according to CNN.com. According to NPR.org, officials were unsure of whether to continue the search for bodies or to begin recovery mode, but eventually they began the recovery on Thursday, Jan. 19. Families with loved ones missing were desperate for the rescue teams to keep searching, but other factors present led to the recovery decision. The risk of an environmental disaster from fuel leaking from the ship was a major concern, and recovery had to begin to avert that crisis. The Italian coast guard was informed of the situation a half an hour after the crash, and multiple workers on the ship commuicated with the coast guard responders via radio. Workers who initially communicated with the coast guard did not know exactly what the problem was, but believed that it was a black out. Francesco Schettino, the Costa Concordia's captain, has been blamed from all sides. Costa Cruises as well as the authorities have placed the blame soley on him Schettino. On Tuesday, January 17, Schettino was placed under house arrest while further investigations are completed. Transcripts from Schettino's conversation with coast guard personnel reveal that he abandoned the ship as it was sinking, even though he was ordered by the coast guard to get back on and help with rescue efforts. In a later hearing, he could be charged with abandoning a ship, shipwreck, and manslaughter. CNN reported that Rogelio Barista, a cook on board the ship when it crashed, told television crews that Schettino ordered dinner for himself and a woman who, had not yet been named by Costa Cruises. Freshman Annie Winston has been on a cruise before, and thought her experience was great. "I really enjoyed it, I liked all the activities and the food was wonderful," she said. When asked if this story changed her opinion about cruises, she said that she didn't. "I feel that it was all the captain's fault," she said.