Tragedies at sea: The Sewol and the Costa Concordia

The causes may be very different and the toll far heavier but Italian media have pointed to similarities between the ferry disaster of the Sewol in South Korea and the Costa Concordia cruise ship crash in 2012.

“A case of Schettino in Korea” has been the recurring headline in Italian newspapers in the past few days — a reference to the Italian liner’s captain now on trial for an accident in which 32 people lost their lives.

With South Korean rescuers reporting 270 people missing and 32 confirmed dead, Italian media have focussed on the role played by the ferry’s captain Lee Joon-Seok, who was arrested on Saturday along with two of his crew.Tragedies at sea: The Sewol and the Costa Concordia Publication

Sewol and Costa Concordia: two sea tragedies strikingly alike

“A case of Schettino in Korea” has been the recurring headline in Italian newspapers in the past few days – a reference to the Italian liner’s captain now on trial for an accident in which 32 people lost their lives.
The same number of people are now confirmed dead in the Sewol tragedy, while 270 people are still missing.

As frustration and despair run high in the South Korean republic, everyone’s attention has focused on the 69 year old captain Lee Joon-Seok, who, witnesses say, chose to flee the tilted ship without a minute-long hesitation. Earlier on Friday he was arrested along with two of his crew members. Here are five similarities between the disasters
Captain in charge
Delayed evacuation
Captain leaves
Capsized ship
Difficult rescue

Sewol and Costa Concordia: two sea tragedies strikingly alike Voice of Russia
Ferry Disaster Compared to Costa Concordia Maritime Executive
Captains Uncourageous: Abandoning Ship Long Seen As A Crime NPR

Are Captains who abandon ship breaking the law?

The captain of the South Korean ferry that sank with hundreds of high school students aboard is under criminal investigation for his actions, but it’s not clear whether he broke any laws by being one of the first people off the crippled boat.

While the “captain goes down with his ship” is considered a law of the sea, it’s really more just a guideline, experts say.

Lee Joon-seok, 69, climbed onto one of the first lifeboats to launch from the ship just a half an hour after reporting an accident.
Are Captains who abandon ship breaking the law? ABC News

Biggest cruise ships to give Venice a wide berth from November 30

Cruise lines said Thursday their biggest ships would give Venice a wide berth from November 30 after a long-running row about their effect on the delicate lagoon city. The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) made the vow after a meeting with Italian culture, environment and transport ministers. In the latest episode in the long saga, Italy’s leading environmental group last month accused a regional court of recklessness for suspending a ban on large cruise ships in Venice’s fragile lagoon. “It is certainly not a good sign, and it is the result of a reckless choice of recent years that has created the practice of channelling cruise ships in an environment where they should be banned,” said Legambiente.

Biggest cruise ships to give Venice a wide berth from November 30 Publication

Questions mount in South Korean ferry disaster; hundreds still missing

Jindo, South Korea (CNN) — Anguished relatives of missing South Korean ferry passengers waited somberly for answers Thursday as rescuers fought bad weather, murky water, darkness and time to find a way deep into the capsized ship.

Authorities believe 276 people — many of them high school students on a field trip — may remain trapped inside the five-story ship. At least some, authorities say, could still be alive more than a day after the ship rolled over.

Meanwhile, the ferry’s captain is facing mounting questions about the incident.

Among other things, authorities are investigating the possibility the ship was off course when it ran into trouble, as well as reports that few of its lifeboats made it into the water, according to Kim Soo Hyeon, the chief of South Korea’s Yellow Sea Maritime Police Agency.

Ferry captain Lee Joon Suk, his head and face covered, broke down in tears when reporters asked if he had anything to say.

“I am sorry, I am at a loss for words,” Lee said at a South Korean Coast Guard office.

At least 20 people are known dead, according to the South Korean Ministry of Security and Public Administration. As of Thursday night, at least 179 had been rescued.

Weather hinders rescue

More than 170 ships and 512 divers have swarmed the ferry about 20 kilometers (12 miles) from the Jindo, South Korea, harbor where relatives have gathered.

But poor conditions have kept rescuers from reaching parts of the ship where air pockets could be sustaining survivors, authorities said.

Can they survive in air pockets?

Relentless rain, whipping winds and thick fog stymied rescue efforts Thursday. Three of the 22 volunteer divers who joined the search went missing in high tide but were later found, YTN said.

Efforts to pump air into the ship also failed because of the bad weather.

Despite government assurances that rescuers would work around the clock to save lives, some relatives were angry about the pace of the rescue operation.

“If the government cares for the people, our family, our children, please rescue our families and our children,” said Chang Min, whose second-grade son is among the missing.

‘Don’t move’

The ferry, which is designed to carry cargo and vehicles as well as passengers, was on a routine passage between Incheon and the resort island of Jeju when something went awry shortly before 9 a.m. Wednesday.
On board were more than 300 Seoul high school students and teachers on a four-day trip to the island.

Questions mount in South Korean ferry disaster; hundreds still missing CNN
S Korea ferry: Bad weather hampers search for survivors BBC
South Korea ferry: Hundreds missing as ship sinks BBC
Students Among Hundreds Missing After South Korean Ferry Sinks New York Times
Nearly 300, mostly teens, missing after South Korean ferry sinks CBS News
Hundreds feared drowned in ferry disastere USA Today
South Korea ferry sinking Fox News
South Korea ferry riders texted desperate messages to loved ones as boat sank New York Daily News
South Korea Ferry Disaster: A Nation Searches for Answers Time News
‘I love you,’ student texts mom from sinking South Korea ferry LA Times

Schettino Accused of Cover Up

Costa Concordia captain accused of mounting cover up

Francesco Schettino, who steered the doomed cruise ship Costa Concordia onto rocks in 2012, tried to blame the collision on a black out, a witness at his trial claimed on Monday.

Schettino is accused of piloting the 114,000 tonne Costa Concordia onto the Tuscan island of Giglio during a ‘sail past’ of the island, ripping a hole in the ship which tilted onto its side in shallow water. As 4,200 passengers and crew fled the vessel, 32 drowned.

Schettino Accused of Cover Up Maritime Security Review

Concordia Captain Tried to Blame Wreck on Electrical Blackout

The captain of the Costa Concordia tried to persuade the crisis coordinator of the cruise line to pretend an electrical blackout had caused the shipwreck, a court was told on Monday.

The luxury liner hit rocks as it sailed close to the island of Giglio in January 2012, killing 32 people and setting off a chaotic evacuation of crew and passengers, some of who jumped into the sea and swam ashore.

Concordia Captain Tried to Blame Wreck on Electrical Blackout Marine Link

Shipwreck off Italy must be removed soon

An Italian official is pressing for the speedy removal of the shipwrecked cruise liner, the Costa Concordia, warning that the hulk may break up in winter storms.

Franco Gabrielli, head of the removal efforts, told residents of the tiny Mediterranean island of Giglio on Monday that the ship must be towed by September at the latest. Gabrielli says another winter’s worth of storms may damage the ship to such an extent that towing won’t be possible.

He pressed various national, regional and local authorities to move forward on plans.

Shipwreck off Italy must be removed soon mail.com

Missing Costa Concordia helmsman found in Indonesia

The Costa Concordia helmsman who failed to turn up to court in early March was discovered by Interpol officers in Indonesia last week.

Jacob Rusil Bin, who was steering the doomed cruise liner when it hit rocks off Giglio, was found in the countryside outside Jakarta.

Mr Rusil Bin is wanted in Italy to testify in the trial of Costa Concordia’s captain Francesco Schettino, however it’s not yet clear whether he will be forced to take the stand.

Missing Costa Concordia helmsman found in Indonesia Yachting & Boating World

Concordia helmsman found in Indonesia

The helmsman who was steering the Costa Concordia cruise ship when it crashed in 2012, leaving 32 people dead, has been picked up in Indonesia by international police agency Interpol.

Helmsman Jacob Rusil Bin was found by Interpol in the countryside outside the Indonesian capital Jakarta, Corriere della Sera reported on Wednesday.

Former crew of the Costa Concordia, Rusil Bin was steering the cruise ship when it ran aground off the coast of Tuscany on January 13th 2012 with over 4,000 people on board. The 114,500-ton vessel is still resting off the shore waiting to be towed away, after being turned upright in September in a salvage operation estimated to cost €825 million.

Concordia helmsman found in Indonesia the Local
Costa Concordia missing helmsman found in Indonesia Gazzetta del Sud
Costa Concordia missing helmsman found Ansa