Italian court hears first testimony from passengers who survived the disaster, many of whom still suffer from panic attacks and other forms of psychological trauma
Survivors of the Costa Concordia shipwreck have given evidence for the first time in the trial of Capt Francesco Schettino, telling a court in Italy that they still suffer from panic attacks and post-traumatic stress disorder.
The former passengers described the panic and chaos that unfolded after the huge cruise liner hit rocks off the island of Giglio on the night of Jan 13, 2012, saying that not even the crew knew what to do as sea water flooded into the stricken ship’s hull.
Costa Concordia survivors tell court for first time of chaos night of crash Telegraph
Captain Francesco Schettino, who was in charge of the Costa Concordia cruise ship when it hit rocks and sank off the Italian coast and who is being tried for manslaughter, for abandoning ship and other crimes, has blamed his officers for the disaster.
“It’s the fault of my officers. It’s stated in the maritime code,” he said.
“We were half a mile away from the coast and at that distance the crew on duty is responsible for steering the ship,” he said.
“We found ourselves on the rocks and nobody said: ‘captain, we are very close, or captain, watch out’,” he claimed, adding he had tried a last-ditch manoeuvre that failed because the helmsman got it wrong.
Costa Concordia captain still denies blame MICE
The mammoth project to refloat the doomed Costa Concordia cruise ship has been suspended until a decision is made over which port will scrap the wreck, Italian media said Wednesday.
The ship’s owner Costa has decided temporarily to halt the unprecedented project to float the 290-metre (951-foot) long vessel, over environmental concerns raised by the body charged with overseeing the salvage, according to reports.
The supervisory body “requested supplementary information on the environmental impact,” said Sergio Girotto, project manager for the Titan Micoperi salvage effort — prompting Costa to stop the works while it obtained more detailed information on the floating process.
Italian ports are fighting off competition from Turkey to scrap the Concordia, which sank off the Tuscan island of Giglio in 2012, leaving 32 people dead.
Costa Concordia removal project halted The Local