M/S Costa Concordia incidents January 13-14, 2012 caused by ship not being seaworthy - Introduction -

about the conspiracy of alleged crimes of the Master, the capsize and part sinking 14 January 2012, the 11 February 2015 reasons to sentence the innocent Master to 16+ years in jail and to pay millions in damages to third parties for crimes (not) committed, the tragedy of the ruined Master, the conspiracy of the ship owner & Co to frame him - kill him! - and to defraud insurances of all kind ... the illegal drugs carried aboard ... and the role of the Moldovan dancer ... and about the hull in dry-dock at Genoa, Italy, June 2017 ... and why nobody cares. But the incident is not over. The European Court of Human Rights have been asked to consider the matter again

by
Anders Björkman of Heiwa Co - European Agency for Safety at Sea!

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Welcome to this long article about the 13/14 January 2012 incidents of the Italian flag of convenience - international register = anything goes = cheap cruises M/S Costa Concordia owned by an irresponsible and criminal ship owner - Carnival Corporation & plc and its Master Francesco Schettino. It is last up-dated 8 June 2018.

The former owned and operated the not seaworthy M/S Costa Concordia.

The latter was 11 February 2015 sentenced to 16+ years in jail + paying millions of Euros to third parties being totally responsible for the allegedly criminal incidents described below; accidental contact 13 January 2012, badly executed Abandon ship with himself first off the ship, capsize, sinking, killing 32 persons, causing a shipwreck and damaging the environment the next day 14 January 2012, etc, etc.


The following happened 13/14 January 2012:

Time

Event/incident

Angle of list

Source

Time after "contact"

21.45

Contact with underwater rock or ...

AIS

0

21.50

Black out

crew

0 h 05 min

22.36

Ship drifting

crew

0 h 51 min

22.44

Ship touching the sea bottom

Patrol boat "G 104"

0 h 59 min

22.48

General (Abandon ship) Alarm

1 h 03 min

22.55

First lifeboat launched

Patrol boat "G 104"

1 h 10 min

22.58

Ship grounding

15°

Master

1 h 13 min

23.37

440 persons still to evacuate

20°

Livorno Coast Guard

1 h 52 min

00.34

Capsize - ship master leaves the ship

70-75°

Master

2 h 49 min

00.41

Helicopter ITCG intervention to recover 50 persons still aboard

80°

Livorno Coast Guard

2 h 56 min

01.46

Leghorn M.R.S.C intimates the master to go onboard the ship and to give an account of the actual situation

Livorno Coast Guard

4 h 01 min

03.44

50 persons still to evacuate

Livorno Coast Guard

5 h 59 min

04.22

30 persons still to evacuate

Livorno Coast Guard

6 h 37 min

06.14

Evacuation completed

Livorno Coast Guard

8 h 29 min

Source:

During 21.50 and 22.48 hrs Master and senior officers reviewed the situation and then decided to transfer all passengers to nearby Porto Giglio. Nobody has died then. Afterwards many things got wrong but none were the faults of Schettino.

Schettino of course appealed. He considers himself victim of a conspiracy to make him a scapegoat.

My simple opinion is that Francesco Schettino is completely innocent of any wrong doings. He just followed instructions given by the ship owner ashore to pass Giglio island on 13 January 2012. Doing so the ship contacted a submerged rock by accident ... and nobody died then! People died later on 14 January 2012. And it was not the fault of Schettino!

The ship was not seaworthy with full knowledge of owner, authorities, experts ashore, hull underwriters and ... media. I explain it below. The matter has been subject to an interesting discussion starting here and ending here.

The conspirators are (1) the ship owner Carnival Corporation & plc, (2) its Italian subsidiary Costa, (3) the Italian maritime and judicial authorities, (4) various Italian experts, (5) the marine insurance underwriters ... assisted by (6) media.

M/S Costa Concordia has four sister ships still operating 2018: Costa Serena, Costa Pacifica, Costa Favolosa and Costa Fascinosa. They have the same watertight doors and life saving appliances as Costa Concordia and use the same crew and procedures. No masters of any sister ship have protested that their colleague Francesco Schettino is in jail for operating a not seaworthy ship.

Plenty people are involved in this conspiracy to frame Francesco Schettino.

On 12 May 2017 Schettino's lawyer Saverio Senese opened the hearings of the Court of Cassation in Rome and insisted once again that the accident on 13 January 2012 and its deadly consequences on 14 January 2012 were primarily due to organisational failings for which the ship owner, Costa Crociere, its Indonesian helmsman and the Italian coastguard should share the blame. He also argued that it was not the accidental contact, but rather the chaos that ensued due to the ship losing power - the Black-out - that was the proximate cause of the deaths, damages and various losses.

Schettino could not be blamed for the inherent technical failures and deficiencies of a ship he only commanded. He could not be blamed for deficient life saving equipment, incorrect mustering procedures and the illegal, watertight doors fitted, etc.

Senese asked for permission to show the court a recent, short DVD about matters that previous courts had completely ignored:

1. The strange show on the bridge prior contact with the Master - Schettino, his C/O, 2/O and 3/O shouting orders to an incompetent Indonesian helmsman not turning the rudders to steer the ship during six (!) minutes in the dark of the night - it could not be real! The ship was not seaworthy! Of course nobody had died then!

2. The extent of structural hull damage between frs. #52 and #100 port side after 'contact', so only three watertight compartments (#4, #5 and #6) were partly up-flooded (double botttom intact), when the floatability and stability of the ship were in order for several hours. The ship could not sink and the risk of capsize was zero! However, the ship lost propulsion and there was a Black-Out. Emergency light started and worked all the time. After a while Abandon ship was ordered. But nobody had died!

3. The watertight doors of the ship, e.g. #7 and #10 and many others, were opened after the contact allowing progressive flooding of intact compartments #3 and #7, which played a decisive part in the tragedy - the progressive flooding sank the ship after loss of stability/capsize. The ship was not seaworthy! And nobody had died prior the caspize!

4. The defective LSA preventing proper evacuation - most life rafts were not used at all and six lifeboats could not be launched at once - all due to faults of the shipowner! Port lifeboats #6, #12 and #16 for 450 persons were not launched at all for clear reasons - the davits were blocked! Three starboard lifeboats were launched after long delays after the Schettino had intervened in situ. The seats in the lifeboats were taken by crew and staff leaving 100's of passengers aboard of which 32 later died. The staff and crew should have used the life rafts but they didn't! A complete Abandon ship was not possible. The ship was not seaworthy! But nobody had died at this moment!

The judges ruled against Schettino. Poor Schettino alone was responsible for everything! I know why! The criminals ashore neeeded a scapegoat. You will read about it here.

The damages of the wreck and its illegal, watertight doors could still be seen May 2017 in dry-dock at Genoa. The dry-dock and wreck should be turned into a museum! The Francesco Schettino passenger ship wreck museum! The whole thing is just a show! There are also four not seaworthy sister ships with illegal watertight doors and procedures to visit and look at! And many other similar, unsafe ships.

However - the scrapping company then July 7, 2017, informed:

"Genoa, 7 July 2017 - The dismantling and recycling of the Concordia cruise ship, one of the most important green ship recycling projects ever carried out in Europe, has been completed (!) in Genoa by San Giorgio del Porto, in partnership with Saipem.

The success of these operations represents an additional recognition of the high value of Italian naval engineering [sic], while demonstrating the importance of a ship recycling activity that is respectful of the environment [sic] and of the safety of workers [sic], in accordance with the most recent European regulations [sic].

Less than three years have passed since the arrival of the Concordia wreck in Genoa, on July 27th 2014. Below some of the most significant numbers of this project since the beginning of the operations:

Workforce employed: up to 350

Total effective hours worked: approximately 1 million

Companies and suppliers involved: 78 (98% of them are Italian)

Total recycled material: approximately 90%, equal to over 53,000 tons for almost 4,000 trips to recycling facilities in Italy

Total dismantled material: 8,000 tons with over 850 trips to dismantling facilities."

After that the scrapping company disappeared for ever. What was it?

The Concordia wreck scrapping company or Ship Recycling Consortium was formed by Saipem (51%) and San Giorgio del Porto (49%). These two companies joined forces in September 2012 with the aim of providing services in the field of "Green Ship Dismantling" (i.e. environmentally and socially sustainable dismantling of end-of-life ships) in Genoa/Italy. Their motto was:

"The project of dismantling and recycling of the wreck of the Concordia is the most challenging ship dismantling operation ever carried out in Italy and, in all likelihood, worldwide, in terms of both the size of the vessel and the condition in which the wreck is afloat."

Thanks to its technical and management expertise, Saipem says that it guarantees supervision of the environmental aspects of ship dismantling projects; its services include monitoring, environmental protection measures, oil spill response, remediation of areas and infrastructure as well as waste disposal and recycling, we are told.

San Giorgio del Porto has the right to use major (?) ship demolition and recycling assets (sic) in the ports of Genoa and Marseille (sic). It is the first shipyard to be listed on the Italian Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport's Special Register of Environmental Ship Reclamation & Recycling Facilities. Why not? But are they listed to recyle ships at Marseille, France? Or anywhere? And are there any ship demolition assets in Genoa? No!

The Ship Recycling Consortium says it works according to the International Convention for the safe and environmentally sound recycling of ships and that it has an Integrated Environmental Authorization for dismantling and recycling of the Concordia; it is duly certified and authorized with regard to the two companies' respective Quality, Environmental and Safety Management Systems (9000/14000/18000) and also has specific ISO 30000:2009 certification for Ship Recycling Management.

However the companies and their consortium are not even on the list of EU approved ship recycling facilities and the Convention referred to is not in force anywhere.

So the wreck had finally disappeared! It happened already May 2017. But in January 2017 there was still 17 000 tons of scrap flush on the concrete bottom of drydock #4 at Genoa. And the company was not even approved to scrap ships according to any laws and ... there are no records that the scrap was recycled anywhere 2017!

In my opinion the only possibility that the wreck disappeared is:

that the 35 m long structural damage in the port side was patched up watertight in drydock September 2016 - March 2017, so the hull could float again, and that, one dark night April 2017, the drydock was filled with water and ... what remained of the wreck was towed away to sea ... and sunk! The famous watertight doors were of course open ... again.

Will we ever know?

Only the Mafia could have done it!

The President of the 6th Division of Italian Supreme Court of Cassation at Rome, Mr. Vincenzo Romis, later announced the decision that Francesco Schettino must go to jail for 16+ years and to pay millions of Euros to third parties. When you read this Schettino is in jail. Of course he cannot pay anyone millions from there. I have asked Google about this president Vincenzo Romis. Google has very little about him. Who is he? I don't know! Mafia? Wreck disappearing at Genoa?

After the decision was public Schettino's lawyer Saverio Senese said:

"The malfunctioning of the watertight doors is an argument we were unable to develop further because the ship is being dismantled, thus destroying evidence in Schettino's defence," ... "Schettino is the only one to have paid a price. He was made the scapegoat".

The defence team then considered an appeal to the European Court of Human Rights and its European Convention on Human Rights, e.g. its article 7 - No punishment without law - and §1:

No one shall be held guilty of any criminal offence on account of any act or omission which did not constitute a criminal offence under national or international law at the time when it was committed.

It is a pity that no decision of a new trial, based on my information presented below, has yet been taken.

It is not a crime to accidentally 'contact' a submerged rock at sea with a ship. It happens frequently. However, it is a crime to send a not seaworthy ship to sea! And to make a simple seaman - the Master Schettino - liable to pay millions in damages to third parties and send him to jail. It is very bad (Italian) law!

So I repeat: my simple opinion is that Francesco Schettino is completely innocent of any wrong doings. He just followed instructions given by the ship owner. The ship was not seaworthy with full knowledge of owner, authorities, experts ashore, hull underwriters and ... media.

Thursday, March 22, 2018, the European Court of Human Rights was seized:

Francesco Schettino's attorneys, Severio Senese and Pasquale De Sena, Professor of International Law, lodged an appeal with the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg (France) - Application number is unfortunately not known:

"The appeal is submitted for examination of the Court as quickly as possible on the basis of the documents and information provided".

The attorneys denounce fundamental violations in both the first and second Italian trials. If the judges of the European Court of Human Rights recognize these violations, the Italian judgment will be called into question and the ex-commander Francesco Schettino of the Costa Concordia will be released pending a new trial. The first chamber that has been seized to examine the record of the violation of human rights has two possibilities:

1st, process of amicable settlement between the parties concerned with respect for human rights. In the case of an agreement, the chamber pronounces a brief decision in which it sets out the facts and the chosen solution.

2nd, if the amicable agreement fails and after adversarial examination of the case, the Court decides on the existence or not of a violation of the European Convention of the human rights. In the case of Francesco Schettino, if the violation is recognized he will be released and the Court may even award him damages.

In both cases, Francesco Schettino is likely to regain his freedom in the coming months. Subsequently, the Italian justice to appoint a new court competent to open a new judicial process with of course a new investigation and a new trial. It sounds good! Very good.

But ... try to contact the European Court of Human Rights to find out what happens is another problem. Nobody there seems to have heard about it April 2018.

oo0oo

The damages of the wreck and its illegal, watertight doors could still be seen May 2017. The wreck/damages/watertight doors were available in dry-dock at Genoa until May 2017. The dry-dock and wreck should be turned into a museum! The Francesco Schettino passenger ship wreck museum! The whole thing is just a show! There are also four not seaworthy sisterships with illegal watertight doors and procedures to visit and look at! And many other similar, unsafe ships.

However - the scrapping company has July 7, 2017, informed: 

"Genoa, 7 July 2017 - The dismantling and recycling of the Concordia cruise ship, one of the most important green ship recycling projects ever carried out in Europe, has been completed (!) in Genoa by San Giorgio del Porto, in partnership with Saipem.

The success of these operations represents an additional recognition of the high value of Italian naval engineering [sic], while demonstrating the importance of a ship recycling activity that is respectful of the environment [sic] and of the safety of workers [sic], in accordance with the most recent European regulations [sic].

Less than three years have passed since the arrival of the Concordia wreck in Genoa, on July 27th 2014. Below some of the most significant numbers of this project since the beginning of the operations:

  • Workforce employed: up to 350
  • Total effective hours worked: approximately 1 million
  • Companies and suppliers involved: 78 (98% of them are Italian)
  • Total recycled material: approximately 90%, equal to over 53,000 tons for almost 4,000 trips to recycling facilities in Italy
  • Total dismantled material: 8,000 tons with over 850 trips to dismantling facilities."

So the wreck had finally disappeared! It happened already May 2017. But in January 2017 there was still 17 000 tons of scrap flush on the concrete bottom of drydock #4 at Genoa. And the company was not even approved to scrap ships according to any laws and ... there are no records that the scrap was recycled anywhere 2017!

In my opinion the only possibility that the wreck disappeared is:

that the 35 m long structural damage in the port side was patched up watertight in drydock September 2016 - March 2017, so the hull could float again, and that, one dark night April 2017, the drydock was filled with water and ... what remained of the wreck was towed away to sea ... and sunk! The famous watertight doors were of course open ... again.

Will we ever know?

Only the Mafia could have done it!

This will not be the end of this show, because, with the Master in jail, other civilian parties will finally be given a chance to be heard, e.g. the passengers! They do not like having bought tickets on a ship that was ... not seaworthy! Only a few 100's have been paid.

Anyway, since many years I inform concerned parties of media and public that you cannot blame one person, e.g. a sea Master for a stupid incident at sea, just like that! But nothing happens. The Paris Mou Port State Control inspectors haven't even stopped any not seaworthy passenger ship like M/S Costa Concordia and sister and similar ships and ferries any time before and after this infamous sinking incident that was blamed on the poor Master alone. Reason is that these PSC people are not very clever or, maybe, they are also part of the conspiracy show?

The not seaworthy M/S Costa Concordia, Italian/European flag of convenience/no safety rules apply, sinking 14 January 2012 is May 2017 an Italian and European Union/EMSA/IMO criminal scandal based on False News!

Media do not report anything correct about it since the beginning more than five years ago!

The hull of the wreck (right) was January 2017, still being recycled in a dry-dock half full of water (!) at Genoa, Italy, and nobody really knew what to do with it!

Well, that is what happens in Europe today!

Five years, four months after the sinking passengership safety at sea has not improved at all. The ship owner has only managed to ensure that the Master should be jailed assisted by Italian authorities sentencing him to 16+ years assisted by criminal experts of safety at sea. I describe the conspiracy below.

Imagine putting an innocent human being 16 years in jail for a little incident at sea and ask him to pay millions to third parties!

Nothing was done by the IMO's Maritime Safety Committee at its 93rd session May 2014 to improve passengership safety at sea. You should read pages 27-32 of the June 2013 report of the IMO/MSC 92nd session about M/S Costa Concordia incidents January 13-14, 2012, which were discussed then. It describes the very unprofessional work at IMO 2013/14 not to improve safety at sea after the M/S Costa Concordia incidents.

The IMO's Maritime Safety Committee 95th session, then took place 3-12 June 2015, i.e. 3 and a half years after the M/S Costa Concordia incidents January 2012. Again little was done to improveThe IMO's Maritime Safety Committee held its 97th Session (MSC 97) from Monday 21 through Friday 25 November 2016. passengership safety at sea.

 

Concordia hull in dry-dock Genoa February 2017 - Source - The #0 main deck is mostly still in place. There are three more decks, A, B and C and the double bottom below to clean out and remove. The bottom of the dry-dock was still full of water (!) ... to prevent any space there to explode when hot work is done up top

How to improve passenger ship safety based on the M/S Costa Concordia sinking 14 January 2012 was not on the agenda. The case was closed! There was nothing to learn. Better to forget everything.

Reason is that by objectively discussing the matter it will be clear that the ship was not seaworthy and the killing of people was just bound to happen due to the known deficiencies aboard the ship ... and similar ships.

IMO therefore thinks it is better to forget the whole thing. Let people enjoy crowded, cheap, unsafe cruises at their own risk! The ship owner or administrations is not responsible any more of what happens onboard. Yes, the ship owner says so himself!

The Secretariat for the Permanent Cooperation Framework (PCF) of Accident Investigation Bodies at EMSA - the European Maritime Safety Agency - is since four years doing nothing. Try to visit its stupid web site to find any information about the M/S Costa Concordia incidents 13/14 January 2012 and you can only find ... nonsense. So you have to read about it here.

It is making me upset 15 May 2017. Why? Well, my interest is safety at sea since 1994, at least.

Typical crowded sun/pool deck of a cheap, unsafe cruise ship

First of all, in order to improve it we in the European Union have to treat all seafarers getting involved in stupid incidents at sea according to the European Union Rules:

DIRECTIVE 2009/18/EC OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 23 April 2009 para (9): 

Seafarers are recognised as a special category of worker and, given the global nature of the shipping industry and the different jurisdictions with which they may be brought into contact, need special protection, especially in relation to contacts with public authorities. In the interests of increased maritime safety, seafarers should be able to rely on fair treatment in the event of a maritime accident. Their human rights and dignity should be preserved at all times and all safety investigations should be conducted in a fair and expeditious manner. To that end, Member States should, in accordance with their national legislation, further take into account the relevant provisions of the IMO guidelines on the fair treatment of seafarers in the event of a maritime accident.  

In order to improve safety at sea we in the European Union including EMSA have to find out what happened and the proximate cause(s). Only then we in the European Union, EMSA and IMO can define correct improvements of safety at sea. To hysterically single out one person, e.g. an Italian sea Master and suggest he caused everything and that the only solution is to punish him with jail and force him to pay millions in damages is ... stupid, immoral and criminal. I cannot understand how Italian ship officers accept such stupid law. A foreign ship owner stating he is not responsible for anything aboard the ship in EU waters is, apart from criminal, ridiculous also stupid, but plenty fools pay for such cheap, unsafe cruises.
A lot of Fake News have been circulated by media since 2012 about it.

1. The first incident - a contact between the ship and a fixed, submerged rock off the Scole island (outside the Giglio island) at 21.45 hrs 13 January 2012 - was a stupid accident, while executing a starboard turn that noone can explain. No seafarer normally steers a ship intentionally aground or up on land as suggested. Nobody really knows how the vertical port stern aft side of the ship actually contacted the rock. The turn and change of course of the ship during the incident is not known and does not tally with voice recordings. Below are two attempts to describe the turn. Is this a negligent Master steering the ship? Some believes it didn't happen

Source: www.safety4sea.com/images/media/pdf/Costa_Concordia_-_Full_Investigation_Report.pdf (page 44)
In one strange proposal the ship arrives and turns one mile south of the Scole island/rock but turns starboard too slowly during five minutes to finally contact the rock. The turn does not tally with any voice or voyage data recordings.

In another proposal the ship arrives further north, turns much later and contacts the rock, while turning sharp in the last moment. There are many other proposals about the mysterious starboard turn described below. Had the ship passed the rock 50 meters to the East or right, there wouldn't have been a contact! Nothing would have happened (unless the ship ran up on land)! No Master Schettino would be sent to jail! This web page would not exist! The cause of the first of seven incidents of the complete accident was crew negligence, i.e. bad bridge procedures, confusion on the bridge by lazy crew appointed by an incompetent ship owner not following ISM procedures or similar. There were many responsible persons of the first incident apart from the ship owner ashore and the Master aboard. Nobody aboard the ship however committed anything criminal. Accidents happen! All were maybe trying to do their best in the darkness in and outside of the wheel house. We do not really know. Wilful negligence, steering gear malfunction and sabotage are also possible causes. The first result of the contact was that a big rock boulder of granite was deposited in the ship's port aft side below waterline. But did it really take place as per voice recordings:

Close up of the very unusual port side shell structural damages aft of M/S Costa Concordia between top of bilge two meters above keel and one meter below waterline, i.e. the vertical extent of damages was about 5 meters.

The ship had, say 8 m/s speed, when it suddenly (?) turned hard starboard away from the shore; the port vertical aft ship side swung suddenly hard sideways towards the shore and made contact with a submerged rock at frame #125. The ship continued forward, while pressing hard against the rock, a 4 meters tall boulder, which got loose and was dislodged into the damaged side forward at frame #52, i.e. about 44 meters aft of the initial contact point at frame #125. The contact lasted less than 6 seconds. Due to this unfortunate (sic) contact between hull and rock the side plate partly fractured and the upper side plates and the lower bilge plates were deformed and pushed inboard. Some steel structure in between the fracture edges disappeared as debris and a big hole was formed, where water entered and up-flooded three affected hull compartments above double bottom at high rate. Several days later somebody removed the white painted debris forward of the granite rock boulder seen above; maybe it was a piece of the watertight bulkhead at fr. #60? The structural damages can ... and should of course be ... re-inspected in drydock at Genoa May 2017 ... if they can pump the drydock empty? Imagine that the Master did this all by himself! I am still very curious to know how a sudden physical contact between any ship underwater hull and a fixed object could produce these structural deformations, fractures and removals of debris of a ship side. I doubt the Master did it.

The strange course between Civitavecchia, Savona and Giglio island

So, let's recall the sad story about the Italian ship Master Francesco Schettino of M/S Costa Concordia contacting something 13 January 2012 by accident, as I see it.

Francesco Schettino had, by orders of the ship owner, decided before 19.18 hrs departing Civitavecchia going to Savona to pass close to the Giglio island around 21.45 hrs. To do so you should evidently set course for the Giglio island straight at departure (picture left - e.g. south of Giannutri island)) and pass east of Giglio ... without turning ... but NO ! The ship went straight for Savona at departure and later, during the trip between the two Italian inland ports 21.11 hrs some officers aboard, turned the ship port straight towards the Giglio island for Francesco Schettino to 21.40 hrs carry out a sharp starboard turn to impress the passengers & Co. Of course no passengers aboard were told about the passage of neither Giglio nor Giannutri!