Cruise Ship Underwater Video As Victim Named

January 19th, 20125:37 am @

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Cruise Ship Underwater Video As Victim Named

The Italian navy has released the first video of divers working inside the Costa Concordia as one of ship’s musicians is identified as being among the dead.

The compelling footage was released as divers examining the Italian cruise liner were forced to suspend work again after the vast wreck shifted slightly.

Meanwhile, the Hungarian government said the body of Sandor Feher, a 38-year-old violinist, was found inside the ship, which is grounded off the Tuscan island of Giglio.

Jozsef Balog, a pianist working with Mr Feher on the ship, said Mr Feher was wearing a lifejacket when he decided to return to his cabin to pack his violin.

Francesco Schettino

Captain Francesco Schettino has been put under house arrest

 

Mr Feher was last seen on deck en route to the area where he was supposed to board a lifeboat.

According to Mr Balog, Mr Feher helped put lifejackets on several crying children before returning to his cabin.

Mr Feher is among 12 people who have been confirmed dead.

Twenty-six others, including 23 passengers and three crew, are still missing following the accident last Friday.

Five days after the 114,500 ton vessel struck a rock and capsized, hopes of finding anyone alive have all but faded and salvage experts are preparing to take over.

Maritime experts have expressed fears that the ship’s position could cause “some small spillage” of the 500,000 gallons of fuel in its 17 tanks.

The ship’s captain Francesco Schettino has been put under house arrest after appearing before an Italian judge on Tuesday.

He has been acccused of causing the accident by coming too close to the shore so he could “make a salute” and also of abandoning ship before the evacuation was complete.

:: Click here for our graphic sequence to find out how the cruise liner ended up on its side

Rescuers have been working around the clock to search the ship but face a race against time because storms are due to move in on Thursday.

Costa Concordia satellite image by Digital Globe

A satellite image of the Costa Concordia (Pic: Digital Globe)

 

The fear is a large sea swell could lift the liner from the rock ledge it is resting on and send it plunging 100m to the bottom of the sea.

The search had continued overnight on sections above the water line and preparations were under way to move into partly submerged areas before work was halted.

“The visibility is awful. Yesterday I couldn’t see my hand in front of my face,” said Giuseppe Minciotti, who is part of the specialist team working at the wreck.

“I grabbed a piece of floating debris, and I couldn’t see what it was until I had my head out of the water. It was a woman’s shoe,” he said.

“We’re waiting today for new openings to be made, and we’ll see if the visibility is any better in those points.”

Costa Concordia

The stricken Costa Concordia lying in the sea by the island of Giglio

 

Coast guard spokesman Cosimo Nicastro said the search, when it resumes, would focus on an evacuation assembly area on the partially-submerged fourth deck.

“It’s where we have already found seven of the bodies and it’s where the passengers and crew gathered to abandon ship,” he said.

As the rescue effort winds down, salvage experts are soon expected to be given the all-clear to start pumping fuel from the vessel.

Dutch maritime services company SMIT has said it is ready to start pumping fuel from the stricken liner once they get the go-ahead from local authorities.

Costa Concordia ship route

 

SMIT has been asked by the ship’s owner and insurer to salvage up to 2,300 tons of fuel from the liner and clean up if any starts to leak.

It comes after a dramatic recording apparently revealed the ship’s captain ignored orders to go back to the ship he had abandoned.

Captain Schettino, who could face charges of manslaughter and abandoning ship, was arrested on Saturday.

He has been blamed by his employer for risking the lives of more than 4,200 passengers.

Article source: http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/World-News/Cruise-Ship-Disaster-Search-Of-Costa-Concordia-Suspended-After-Position-Of-Vessel-Shifts-Rescuers/Article/201201316151327?f=rss