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Italian divers have found the bodies of two women on the wreck of the cruise ship Costa Concordia, bringing the confirmed death toll of the disaster to 15.

Italian authorities say the pumping of fuel from the stricken Costa Concordia can proceed in tandem with the search of the wreck.

Costa Concordia ran aground off the Tuscan coast on 13 January with 4,200 people on board.

It is carrying about 1.9 million litres of fuel in 13 tanks.

An Italian naval vessel is on standby in case of oil leaks.

The bodies of the two women were found near the internet cafe, on the fourth deck.

The women’s families have been notified, officials say.

There is no decision yet on when fuel pumping will begin but the civil protection agency has said it is likely to start within the next 24 hours.

Italian divers have found the bodies of two women on the wreck of the cruise ship Costa Concordia, bringing the confirmed death toll of the disaster to 15

Italian divers have found the bodies of two women on the wreck of the cruise ship Costa Concordia, bringing the confirmed death toll of the disaster to 15

Civil protection official Franco Gabrielli told reporters on Giglio there was no risk the Costa Concordia would drop down to a lower seabed.

“We are ready to go,” an official from the Dutch salvage company Smit said.

“As soon as we get the green light, we start the work”.

The salvagers must first attach steel moorings to the front of the ship. They will not want to start pumping in the dark, she says, so work is likely to begin on Tuesday.

Although there has been no leak so far, the civil protection agency says there is pollution in the water from solvents and disinfectants which were on board the vessel.

Search and rescue work has been suspended several times owing to poor weather.

Coastguard and navy divers have been blasting their way into submerged areas of the vessel using explosives in an effort to find those unaccounted for.

Emergency officials said on Saturday they would not end the search until the whole ship had been examined.


The captain of the Costa Concordia, Francesco Schettino, is being detained under house arrest while his actions are investigated.

Francesco Schettino is accused of multiple manslaughter, causing a shipwreck, and abandoning ship before all passengers were evacuated. He denies the allegations.

The death toll of Costa Concordia cruise ship disaster is raised to 13 after divers have found the body of a woman in the wreck of vessel.

Italian fire service divers found the woman’s body on deck seven of the vessel, about 10 m below the water line, Italy’s Civil Protection Authority said.

Rescue workers are still looking for 20 people who are believed to be missing.

The ship sank on 13 January after hitting rocks near the island of Giglio, off Tuscany.

The death toll of Costa Concordia cruise ship disaster is raised to 13 after divers have found the body of a woman in the wreck of vessel

The death toll of Costa Concordia cruise ship disaster is raised to 13 after divers have found the body of a woman in the wreck of vessel

The woman who has now been found was wearing a life-jacket, officials say. Her body is being removed from the ship.

Only eight of the 13 bodies discovered have so far been identified.

Four of the victims were French, one was Italian, one Hungarian, one Spanish and one German, officials say.

The identity of a woman whose body was found on Saturday has yet to be established, along with those of three men discovered previously.

The head of the Civil Protection Agency, Franco Gabrielli, said the woman may be a Hungarian who was reported missing but was not on the ship’s embarkation list.

There could have been more “illegals” on board, he said, referring to people who were not registered to be on the vessel.

There were known to be 4,200 people on the cruise ship when it got into trouble.

Costa Concordia captain, Francesco Schettino, is being detained under house arrest while his actions are investigated.

Francesco Schettino is accused of multiple manslaughter, causing a shipwreck, and abandoning ship before all passengers were evacuated. He denies the allegations.

Prosecutors say Francesco Schettino was sailing too close to Giglio on an unauthorised course in order to perform a “salute” – a greeting to islanders.

The Italian media have released a new recording in which Captain Francesco Schettino appears to say he will be the last to leave the ship.

In a previously released tape an official is heard repeatedly ordering him back on board.

Coastguard and navy divers have been blasting their way into submerged areas of the vessel using explosives in an effort to find those unaccounted for.

Emergency officials said on Saturday they would not end the search until the whole ship had been examined.

Work has been suspended several times due to poor weather.

On Saturday rescuers halted their search of the submerged parts of the ship due to rough sea conditions, but they were allowed back in on Sunday.

More than 600 members of the Italian emergency services are working on the search operation.

One official said swift action was needed to remove the fuel. An Italian naval vessel is on standby as a precaution should there be an oil leak.

Although there has been no leak so far, the civil protection agency says there is pollution in the water from solvents and disinfectants which were on board the vessel.

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Andy Atkins, his wife Jenny and their four-year-old son Logan miraculously escaped unscathed after their plane plunged into the sea – and doctors passing by in a boat jumped in to save them.

The Texas family was on a sightseeing flight along the coast of Roatan, off Honduras, when the plane’s engine cut out and the craft plummeted into the sea.

There was panic as the plane was sucked under the surface, with Andy Atkins and the pilot desperately scrambling to save his wife and child.

“I dove back under looking for them, came back, got air, went immediately back down,” Andy Atkins, an attorney from Dallas, told NBCDFW.com.

“I came up and I had Logan in my arms and, by the time I got to the surface, Jenny was also at the surface with the pilot holding her.”

But he added: “We were all still in shock at that point.

“We knew that we had survived the initial crash but we didn’t know where it was going to go from there.”

The Texas family was on a sightseeing flight along the coast of Roatan, off Honduras, when the plane's engine cut out and the craft plummeted into the sea

The Texas family was on a sightseeing flight along the coast of Roatan, off Honduras, when the plane's engine cut out and the craft plummeted into the sea

Miraculously, a boat happened to be passing and several people jumped into the water to save them.

Several people on a nearby boat jumped in to save them.

Among the divers were a U.S. Navy doctor and another physician who immediately started treating Jenny Atkins and the boy, NBCDPW reported.

“They screamed that there’s two doctors on board,” Andy Atkins said.

“They got both of them on the back of that boat to give them oxygen and treated them with all their skill.”

The family members were later treated at hospital.

The Atkins family is planning another trip to Roatan this summer – and said the accident brought them closer to the island and the people there.

”It reaffirms your faith in people and humanity that so many people stepped in to help that didn’t have to,” Andy Atkins said.

“We appreciate that we feel like we’ve been given a second chance.”

Co-pilot Segei Golev, who was onboard the UTair Boeing 757 flying from Bangkok to Novosibirsk in western Siberia, died from a heart attack, transportation prosecutors said Friday.

Sergei Golev, 44, suffered the attack in the cockpit and died despite all attempts at resuscitation – even a cardiologist, who was among passengers on the flight, failed to revive him.

Fortunately the 239 passengers onboard the UTair Boeing 757 landed safely in Novosibirsk despite Sergei Golev’s death.

The captain attempted an emergency landing in the Chinese city of Chengdu, but abandoned it because Sergei Golev died before the jet touched down.

Senior investigator Anastasia Utochkina told Life News: “The co-pilot died at 12:25 a.m., Novosibirsk Time (5:25 p.m. GMT), three hours after takeoff.

“The captain made a decision to descend, while the crew called over the tannoy for a female physician who happened to be among the passengers.

“However, her attempts to revive the man, who was lying on the cockpit floor, failed.”

Co-pilot Segei Golev, who was onboard the UTair Boeing 757 flying from Bangkok to Novosibirsk in western Siberia, died from a heart attack

Co-pilot Segei Golev, who was onboard the UTair Boeing 757 flying from Bangkok to Novosibirsk in western Siberia, died from a heart attack

Airport officials insist that the co-pilot was merely traveling as a passenger and in no way and at no point was in control of the aircraft.

Irina Levit, a press officer at Novosibirsk airport: “The deceased pilot was traveling as an ordinary passenger.

“The aircraft belongs to UTair airline, where Sergey Golev was employed. There was no threat to passengers.”

Sergei Golev was a crew member – a reserve pilot, tasked, ironically, with replacing a crew member in case they fall ill.

The Investigation Department of Russia’s transport authority has launched an inquiry into the case in an effort to uncover the cause of the incident.

The former Penn State coach Joe Paterno’s condition has become “serious” after he experienced complications from lung cancer in recent days, say his doctors.

Joe Paterno, 85, was diagnosed shortly after Penn State’s Board of Trustees ousted him on November 9 in the aftermath of the child sex abuse charges against former assistant Jerry Sandusky.

Joe Paterno is been getting treatment since, and his health problems were worsened when he broke his pelvis – an injury that first cropped up when he was accidentally hit in pre-season practice last year.

The former Penn State coach Joe Paterno's condition has become “serious” after he experienced complications from lung cancer in recent days, say his doctors

The former Penn State coach Joe Paterno's condition has become “serious” after he experienced complications from lung cancer in recent days, say his doctors

Family spokesman, Dan McGinn, says former Penn State coach Joe Paterno, who has lung cancer, is in serious condition after experiencing health complications.

“Over the last few days Joe Paterno has experienced further health complications,” spokesman Dan McGinn said in a brief statement to the Associated Press.

“His doctors have now characterised his status as serious.

“His family will have no comment on the situation and asks that their privacy be respected during this difficult time,” he said.

Joe Paterno has been in the hospital since January 13 for observation for what his family had called minor complications from his cancer treatments.

According to reports, Joe Paterno was read his last rites at the hospital.

The death toll of Costa Concordia disaster is raised to twelve after the body of a woman has been found on board of the Italian cruise ship.

The woman, who was wearing a life jacket, was found by divers on the fourth deck of the Costa Concordia.

Twenty people are still missing after the ship, with 4,200 people on board, struck a rock in shallow waters on 13 January off Tuscany’s Giglio island.

Costa Concordia captain, Francesco Schettino, is being investigated for manslaughter, which he denies.

The death toll of Costa Concordia disaster is raised to twelve after the body of a woman has been found on board of the Italian cruise ship

The death toll of Costa Concordia disaster is raised to twelve after the body of a woman has been found on board of the Italian cruise ship

An unnamed police official said the woman’s body was found at around 13:30 local time (12:30 GMT) and was taken to the mainland.

“They will have to rely on DNA tests now to identify the victim after a week in the water,” he told AFP news agency.

Coastguard and navy divers resumed their search on Saturday, blasting their way into submerged areas of the vessel using explosives in an effort to find those unaccounted for.

Coast Guard spokesman Cosimo Nicastro said the body was found during a particularly risky search of an evacuation meeting point near the rear of the ship.

“The corridor was very narrow, and the divers’ lines risked snagging” on objects in the passageway, Cosimo Nicastro said.

Rescue officials on Saturday said they would not end the search until the whole ship had been examined.

One official says swift action needs to be taken to remove the fuel that is on board. An Italian naval vessel is on standby as a precaution should there be an oil leak.

The operator of the Costa Concordia is facing a class-action lawsuit in the US, it emerged on Friday.

Italy’s consumer association Codacons and two US law firms said they would file the suit against Costa Cruises on behalf of the passengers.

They want at least $160,000 for each passenger on the ship.

Captain Francesco Schettino is under house arrest, accused of multiple manslaughter, causing a shipwreck, and abandoning ship before all passengers were evacuated.

Prosecutors say Francesco Schettino was sailing too close to Giglio on an unauthorized course in order to perform a “salute” – a greeting to islanders.

Costa Cruises, the company operating Costa Concordia cruise ship that ran aground off Italy is facing a class-action lawsuit in the US.

Italy’s consumer association Codacons and two US law firms said would file the suit against Costa Cruises on behalf of the passengers.

They want at least $160,000 for each passenger on the ship.

Meanwhile Italian officials say the search for 21 people still missing after the disaster will continue until the whole ship has been searched.

The rescue operation continued overnight in dry parts of the Costa Concordia.

Divers are now going into submerged parts at depths of up to 14 m with explosives to open up previously unsearched areas.

Reports say the grounded vessel is shifting at a rate of a few millimetres per hour.

If the ship slips into deeper water, fuel tanks could rupture threatening one of the most unspoilt parts of the Mediterranean.

Costa Cruises, the company operating Costa Concordia cruise ship that ran aground off Italy is facing a class-action lawsuit in the US

Costa Cruises, the company operating Costa Concordia cruise ship that ran aground off Italy is facing a class-action lawsuit in the US

Costa Cruises, owned by US-based Carnival Group, has blamed the ship’s captain Francesco Schettino for last week’s crash, in which at least 11 people were killed.

The Costa Concordia hit rocks off the coast of the Tuscan island of Giglio with more than 4,200 people on board a week ago. Hundreds were injured.

Relatives of victims are expected to come to Giglio, which is being visited by Senate President Renato Schifani, the number two in the Italian government.

Mitchell Proner, a lawyer with Proner & Proner, said: “Along with Codacons, we have formed an association and our firms are collectively going to be filing a suit in Miami, by Wednesday next week, on behalf of all the victims of the Costa Concordia disaster.”

He said claimants would be seeking compensation for continued medical care, loss of earnings as well as the psychological impact they had suffered while trying to get off the ship.

Mitchell Proner said that some of the claimants – currently 110 – would seek two or three times the minimum claim, while the worse cases could seek as much as 1million euros.

Costa Cruises said it was open to the concerns of all consumer associations and individual passengers.

“The company understands those concerns and will respond in due course, but for now, it wants to concentrate on dealing with the immediate tragedy,” said a spokesman for Costa.

“As an initial gesture, it has already sent letters to all those passengers on board asking them to detail their expenses and any costs they might have incurred so reimbursements can be made.”

Costa Cruises has blamed Captain Francesco Schettino for committing “grave errors of judgement” by steering the ship too close to Giglio on an “unauthorized manoeuvre”.

Captain Francesco Schettino is currently under house arrest suspected of manslaughter, which he denies.

Costa Cruises has begun the process of launching a civil claim against Francesco Schettino in Italy. But Mitchell Proner said that the firm could not pin all responsibility for the disaster on a “rogue captain”.

“It’s easy to say this captain acted alone,” Mitchell Proner said.

“There are indications that there have been regular route deviations in the past. There should have been safeguards on board, where were the alarms?

“At the time of the Titanic it might have been easy to say that radars didn’t exist. Nowadays, with all the technology, it isn’t. There had to be a failure in the system that allowed this to happen.”

The president of Codacons, Marco Ramadori, said Costa Cruises’ offer was insufficient.

“They are offering to refund the cost of the ticket as if you had missed a plane and lost your luggage. You cannot compare the two,” Marco Ramadori said.

Costa passengers are reported to have signed a contract when buying their cruise tickets that any litigation would have to be pursued under Italian law.

But Mitchell Proner said that he thought it likely that the US courts would accept the case.

“The US has a long tradition of protecting rights and not only is Costa owned by an American company but they have brought themselves into our stream of commerce,” Mitchell Proner said.

“There were 120 Americans on board and they will demand access to their rights,” he said.

Scientists who created a mutant bird flu, a potentially more deadly strain, have temporarily stopped their research amid fears of bioterrorism.

In a letter published in Science and Nature, the scientists call for an “international forum” to debate the risks and value of the studies.

US authorities last month asked the authors of the research to redact key details in forthcoming publications.

A government advisory panel suggested the data could be used by terrorists.

Biosecurity experts fear a mutant form of the virus could spark a pandemic deadlier than the 1918-19 Spanish flu outbreak that killed up to 40 million people.

The National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB) recommended key details to be omitted from publication of the research, which sparked international furor.

“I would have preferred if this hadn’t caused so much controversy, but it has happened and we can’t change that,” Ron Fouchier, a researcher from Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam, told Science Insider.

“So I think it’s the right step to make.”

While bird flu is deadly, its reach has been limited because it is not transmissible between humans.

However, the H5N1 flu virus was altered to be passed easily between ferrets, during the joint research by Erasmus University in the Netherlands and the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US.

Two scientific journals want to publish the research – albeit in redacted form – and are trying to work out with the US government how to make the data accessible to “responsible scientists”.

H5N1 flu virus was altered to be passed easily between ferrets, during the joint research by Erasmus University in the Netherlands and the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US

H5N1 flu virus was altered to be passed easily between ferrets, during the joint research by Erasmus University in the Netherlands and the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the US

The World Health Organization said in a December statement that limiting access to the research would harm an agreement between its members.

The NSABB is made up of scientists and public health experts, 23 from outside the government, and 18 from within.

It cannot stop publication but makes recommendations to researchers.

The scientists’ letter published on Friday argues that knowledge of more infectious strains before they mutate in nature is valuable for public health.

“More research is needed to determine how influenza viruses in nature become human pandemic threats,” the statement says, “so that they can be contained before they acquire the ability to transmit from human to human, or so that appropriate countermeasures can be deployed if adaptation to humans occurs.”

But some said the pause on research was not enough.

One critic of the studies, Richard Ebright, a biologist at Rutgers University, told Science Insider that the letter “includes flatly false statements” making assurances about the safety of H1N1 research labs.

Reports say that a meeting debating the research and steps forward could come during a World Health Organization meeting in February.

Scientists from Dickinson College, Pennsylvania, have found that boa constrictors halt squeezing a prey when their victim’s heart stops.

This accurate calculation of death, while seemingly just cruel, allows the snake to expend the minimum amount of energy

Scientists discovered boas can actually “feel” their victim’s heartbeat after a series of experiments.

First they used dead rats with implanted “simulated hearts” (water-filled bulbs connected to a pump) to lure the snakes.

Scientists from Dickinson College, Pennsylvania, have found that boa constrictors halt squeezing a prey when their victim's heart stops

Scientists from Dickinson College, Pennsylvania, have found that boa constrictors halt squeezing a prey when their victim's heart stops

When the boas struck out at the rats the scientists controlled their fake hearts remotely.

They also measured the pressure of the squeeze on the rat’s bodies to see whether the snake adjusted according to heartbeat strength.

When scientists kept the hearts pumping, they found the snakes clung onto the rats for “longer than any previous observation of a snake constricting a prey item – live or dead”.

“I couldn’t believe my eyes the first time we tested a snake with a rat with a simulated heart,” lead researcher, Dr. Scott Boback, from Dickinson College, told BBC Nature.

“It was writhing and squeezing the rat in an apparent effort to kill it.”

The team then tried the same experiment with live rats.

The scientists found the boas constricted the rats and then gradually eased off as their prey’s heartbeat dwindled.

“There was such a clear difference I knew we were discovering something interesting,” Dr. Scott Boback said.

In a summary of the study, published in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters, the scientists wrote: “Many of us think of snakes as audacious killers, incapable of the complex functions we typically reserve for <<higher>> vertebrates.

“We found otherwise.”

The scientists added the snakes’ sense of touch may mean the serpents are “capable of things that we did not realize before”.

“For instance, snakes may utilize this acute tactile sense to coordinate complex movements associated with limbless locomotion,” said Dr. Scott Boback.

Royal Marines and Scotland Yard took command of the River Thames yesterday in a determined show of strength as part of a security exercise for the London Olympics called Operation Woolwich Arsenal Pier.

Elite military and police teams joined forces in a combined exercise to give a glimpse of the sheer scale of the Britain’s biggest peacetime security operation yesterday.

The British forces show was designed to test the water for the joint operation, and to illustrate the country’s readiness against terrorism.

Around 100 marines and 50 officers rehearsed a string of high-speed drills amid fears attackers could use the waterways to launch onslaughts on London landmarks.

About 50 marine police officers in rigid inflatables and fast response boats were joined by up to 100 military personnel and a Royal Navy Lynx helicopter for the exercises.

Assistant Commissioner Chris Allison, head of the force’s security operation for the Games, said a Mumbai-style terror attack was one of a host of potential threats to the games.

Royal Marines and Scotland Yard took command of the River Thames yesterday in a determined show of strength as part of a security exercise for the London Olympics called Operation Woolwich Arsenal Pier

Royal Marines and Scotland Yard took command of the River Thames yesterday in a determined show of strength as part of a security exercise for the London Olympics called Operation Woolwich Arsenal Pier

Speaking on the shores of the Thames, Chris Allison said: “There is no specific threat from the river but we would be failing in our duty to ignore it at games time.

“What you have seen today is the sort of things we can do.”

Despite a heavy military presence on show today, Chris Allison insisted the sporting event would remain a “blue games”.

The Thames runs directly past the O2 Arena, which will be known as the North Greenwich Arena for the purpose of the Games, when it will host events including gymnastics.

The river will also be used to transport tourists between venues via water buses and a new cable car.

Typhoon jets and HMS Ocean, the largest ship in the Royal Navy’s fleet, will eventually be deployed to protect the London 2012 Games along with up to 13,500 military personnel.

“If we need the military support, it is there,” Chris Allison said.

“All of our planning is designed to mitigate against potential risks during the summer of 2012, and this is an example of where we will be using specialist military capability to support us.

“This exercise is not in response to any specific threat, but is part of our planning to pre-deploy certain specialist assets to bolster our operation.

“This will be a summer like no other in London. The Thames runs through the very heart of our capital and will be a popular place for people who want to be part of the Olympic spirit.

“This is all part of our planning to ensure this summer’s events take place safely and securely.”

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A new amateur video has emerged showing the crew of the Costa Concordia cruise ship reassuring passengers nothing was wrong, after the vessel had begun taking in water.

In the footage, a crew member says “everything is under control” and asks passengers to go to their cabins.

It is thought the delay in deciding to abandon the ship may have cost lives. At least 11 people died.

Rescue workers have suspended their search once again after the ship shifted in choppy waters on Friday.

The boat’s movements have twice before hampered the work of rescuers, with the search suspended almost all day on Wednesday.

The ship may have only moved by a metre or as little as a few centimetres, but officials fear it could suddenly slip into much deeper water.

A new amateur video has emerged showing the crew of the Costa Concordia cruise ship reassuring passengers nothing was wrong, after the vessel had begun taking in water

A new amateur video has emerged showing the crew of the Costa Concordia cruise ship reassuring passengers nothing was wrong, after the vessel had begun taking in water

The Costa Concordia ran aground off Italy’s coast a week ago with some 4,200 people on board.

Twenty-one people are still missing, and hopes to find any of them alive are fading fast.

The latest amateur footage was posted online by Italy’s Rainews24 on Thursday.

In it, a female crew member is heard telling passengers: “We kindly ask you to return to your cabins, or go for a walk in the hall, if you like.”

She says that she is relaying a message from the commander.

“We’ll resolve the electrical problem that we have with the generator. Everything will be fine. If you want to stand here, it’s fine.

“But I’m kindly asking you to go back to your rooms, where you’ll be seated and tranquil. Everything is under control.”

In the audio tape aired earlier on Thursday, a port authority officer is heard asking the crewman about the situation on board, after passengers had reported a huge jolt and been told to put on life vests.

But an unidentified voice from the Costa Concordia replies: “We had a blackout and we are checking the conditions on board.”

“Do you need help or are you staying in the Giglio area for now?” the port official asks.

“Confirmed. We remain here in the area to check the blackout,” the crew member replies, without making any reference to a crash.

The impression left by the recording is that the crewman failed to give a full account of the gravity of the situation.

The ship’s captain, Francesco Schettino, is under house arrest on suspicion of multiple manslaughter.

The Costa Concordia owners say he was sailing too close to Giglio on an unauthorized course.

Prosecutors have also accused Francesco Schettino of fleeing the ship before evacuation was complete. He denies the accusations.

However Italian media have said Captain Francesco Schettino did admit to making a navigational error.

He told investigators he had “ordered the turn too late” as the luxury ship sailed close to an island, according to a leaked interrogation transcript.

Francesco Schettino also reportedly said the crew had decided to sail close to the island to salute a former colleague.

The company that owns the ship, Costa Cruises, has suspended Captain Francesco Schettino and withdrawn an offer to pay his legal costs, according to reports.

Italian media have also shown pictures of a Moldovan woman, identified as Domnica Cemortan, who says she was on the bridge after the ship ran aground. The woman defended Captain Francesco Schettino’s actions, in an interview with Moldovan TV.

The reports say investigators are trying to speak to her.

Salvage operators are standing by to start pumping fuel from the ship’s tanks to avoid a potential environmental disaster.

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Sarah Burke, the Canadian freestyle skier, has died from injuries sustained in a training accident, a family spokeswoman says.

Sarah Burke, 29, helped bring freestyle skiing events to the Winter Olympics, and was considered a gold medal contender for the 2014 Games.

The Canadian freestyle skier was injured in a superpipe accident at Park City in the US state of Utah.

Tests showed Sarah Burke sustained “irreversible damage to her brain” her spokeswoman said.

Sarah Burke, the Canadian freestyle skier, has died from injuries sustained in a training accident

Sarah Burke, the Canadian freestyle skier, has died from injuries sustained in a training accident

Sarah Burke was airlifted to hospital after her crash on 11 January.

Sarah Burke, the four-time Winter X Games champion crashed on the same superpipe where snowboarder Kevin Pearce suffered a traumatic brain injury during a training accident in late 2009.

The best-known athlete in her sport, Sarah Burke specialized in skiing the superpipe – a version of a traditional halfpipe with walls over 5 m (16ft) high.

“Sarah, in many ways, defines the sport,” Peter Judge, chief executive of Canada’s freestyle team, said before she died.

“She’s been involved since the very, very early days as one of the first people to bring skis into the pipe.”

“She’s also been very dedicated in trying to define her sport but not define herself by winning. For her, it’s been about making herself the best she can be rather than comparing herself to other people.”

A native of Midland, Ontario, Sarah Burke won was named female action sports athlete of the year by TV network ESPN in 2007.

Sarah Burke tore her vertebral artery as a result of the fall, which led to severe bleeding on the brain. That caused her to go into cardiac arrest on the scene, where CPR was performed.

“The family expresses their heartfelt gratitude for the international outpouring of support they have received from all the people Sarah touched,” Nicole Wool, her spokeswoman said.

Sarah Burke’s organs and tissues were donated as per her wishes.

The sport’s leaders defend the safety record of the superpipe and other freestyle events, pointing to requirements for mandatory helmet use, air bags on the sides of pipes during practice and better pipe-building technology.

“There are inherent risks in everything,” Peter Judge said prior to her death.

“Freestyle is a very safe sport in large part because we had to build a safe sport in order to get into the Olympics.”

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RoseMarie Terenzio, John F. Kennedy Jr.’s assistant, has revealed how she talked his wife Carolyn Bessette into taking the flight the couple perished on 12 years ago.

RoseMarie Terenzio, 44, was JFK personal assistant, publicist and one of his closest confidantes during the last five years of his life.

In her book, “Fairy Tale Interrupted”, RoseMarie Terenzio reveals that the couple was having serious troubles in their marriage and Carolyn Bessette had initially refused to join JFK on that ill-fated flight on July 16, 1999.

With their marriage under intense strain, Carolyn Bessette, a Calvin Klein executive, who struggled with the constant media attention her husband attracted, had said she was not going to join him at his cousin Rory’s wedding on July 17.

JFK Jr.,39, who ran George magazine, had told RoseMarie Terenzio that Carolyn Bessette was determined to stay at home and that he was not “going to fight with her about it”, she recalls in People Magazine.

But RoseMarie Terenzio tried to change her mind.

“<<I’m not a priority>>, she said. <<It’s always something else. George. Somebody getting fired. A trip to meet advertisers. I just want some normal married time. I’m exhausted>>” RoseMarie remembers Carolyn Bessette telling her.

But RoseMarie Terenzio said she urged Carolyn Bessette to take the flight and go to the wedding in Massachusetts.

“I know. But now’s not the time to take a stand. His whole family’s going to be at this wedding. Listen. You don’t want to put yourself in a position of being judged, you get enough of that.

“Go get a dress and I’ll get you a car to the airport.” RoseMarie Terenzio told her, according to People.

In her book, “Fairy Tale Interrupted”, RoseMarie Terenzio reveals that the couple was having serious troubles in their marriage and Carolyn Bessette had initially refused to join JFK on that ill-fated flight on July 16, 1999

In her book, “Fairy Tale Interrupted”, RoseMarie Terenzio reveals that the couple was having serious troubles in their marriage and Carolyn Bessette had initially refused to join JFK on that ill-fated flight on July 16, 1999

As he left, JFK Jr. had thanked RoseMarie Terenzio was talking Carolyn Bessette around.

“He turned to me and said, <<Rose you’re the best. Thanks for smoothing things over>>.”

Hours later, JFK Jr.’s plane crashed in the Atlantic Ocean near Martha’s Vinyard, Massachusetts killing him, Carolyn Bessette and her sister Lauren.

After the tragic, untimely deaths, RoseMarie Terenzio said her whole world came crashing down around her, along with her hopes for the future.

“I don’t feel responsible for what happened, but I will certainly always have the feeling that I should have kept my mouth shut and not told Carolyn to get on the plane,” said RoseMarie Terenzio reports People magazine.

Only now as the head of her own public relations company, is RoseMarie Terenzio finally ready to tell her story, giving a very real insight into the lives of the tragic couple.

“John was more than a mannequin of good looks and privilege; Carolyn was not this uptight, cold and guarded person,” RoseMarie Terenzio told People magazine.

Writing the book “felt like paying tribute to them. It felt really good.”

In her book, RoseMarie Terenzio reveals JFK Jr. and Carolyn Bessette’s sometimes tumultuous relationship and the strain Carolyn felt from the constant media attention after their secret wedding in September 1996.

“Whenever she went out – to get coffee, walk the dog, or meet a friend – they were there, pushing in close and shouting things like wh*re and b**ch. If they could break her perfect exterior, it would be an instant story,” RoseMarie Terenzio says in the report by People.

“Carolyn retreated into herself. Unfortunately John didn’t understand. <<Just don’t pay attention to it. I don’t>>, he said.

“I knew that John’s dismissive attitude was due to his frustration. He couldn’t protect his wife. He should have told her as much – I know she really wanted to hear it,” RoseMarie Terenzio added.

The book also gives an insight into the couple’s more loving relationship and how JFK Jr. proposed to Carolyn Bessette on a fishing trip.

RoseMarie Terenzio revealed to People: “The couple teased each other a lot, one Valentine’s Day there was some tabloid story about him cheating, so she sent him flowers from all these famous models and actresses, like Pamela Anderson. He thought it was hilarious.”

JFK Jr.’s former assistant added that she felt the marriage became strained because they struggled to find “peaceful marriage time” amongst the media frenzy and the magazine struggling.

RoseMarie Terenzio also delves into how she planned the couple’s secret wedding on Georgia’s Cumberland Island as well as their tragic funeral and how she struggled to cope with their deaths.

Lauren Scruggs, the model and fashion blogger who lost her left hand and left eye after she walked into a spinning plane propeller, has been pictured in public for the first time since the horrific accident.

Lauren Scruggs was spotted leaving a hospital in Dallas, where she has been recovering since the accident, with her parents on Tuesday.

The 23-year-old model is said to be doing well despite her appalling ordeal, and she looked in good spirits as she faced the camera again.

As she walked rigidly upright wearing stylish sneakers, pedal-pushers and a blue halterneck top, Lauren Scruggs also had a baseball cap pulled down over her face, hiding her bandaged left eye.

Lauren Scruggs was spotted leaving a hospital in Dallas, where she has been recovering since the accident, with her parents on Tuesday

Lauren Scruggs was spotted leaving a hospital in Dallas, where she has been recovering since the accident, with her parents on Tuesday

Lauren Scruggs’ left sleeve was left hanging unobtrusively down by her side, to avoid drawing attention to her injury.

Her public appearance comes after it was revealed that the pilot of the plane which injured her tried to warn her to avoid the propeller.

Curt Richmond revealed to air safety officials that he put his arm up and yelled at Lauren Scruggs as she tried to walk in front of the plane on December 3 at Aero County Airport in McKinney, Texas.

Curt Richmond, who has not spoken publicly about the accident, said the plane’s engine was still running and he told the young woman to walk behind the plane and out of harm’s way.

The pilot put down his arm and turned away from Lauren Scruggs when he thought she had turned to walk away from the spinning propeller, according to a report from the National Transportation Safety Board.

But it’s unclear whether Lauren Scruggs heard his warning over the roar of the engine.

Moments later, someone on the ground screamed “Stop! Stop!” and Curt Richmond saw Lauren Scruggs laying on the tarmac. He immediately cut the engine.

Investigators say Lauren Scruggs walked into the whirling propeller blades on the front of the plane after a 30-minute plane ride to look at Christmas lights from the sky.

Curt Richmond, believed to be a friend of Lauren Scruggs’, had left the engine running while new passengers filed into the small plane as he prepared another trip to the skies.

The NTSB did not find fault with the pilot for the accident but at least one aviation expert said Curt Richmond is ultimately responsible.

“The bottom line is, he should have shut the engine down,” air safety investigator Denny Kelly said.

“The bottom line is he made a mistake.”

Lauren Scruggs, who has been recovering in hospital since the accident, wrote on the LoLo magazine website for the first time earlier this month.

The model said: “I don’t know how to thank each one of you, properly, for so much love during this difficult incident in my life. My heart is so grateful beyond what I could ever imagine.

“So thank you dearly for the sweet encouragements, the precious words in letters and messages, the beautiful grace in pretty presents, but mostly I am so so thankful for you and your loving hearts and sweet spirits.”

Lauren Scruggs, a communications graduate who is known to her friends as Lo, had just got off of the plane after viewing Christmas lights from above Dallas when the tragedy struck.

She has been in intense rehabilitation ever since.

Lauren Scruggs made her first trip outside the hospital last week, taking a break from her four-and-a-half weeks of intense rehab.

Her mother, who has updated her daughter’s progress on the CaringBridge account, wrote of their visit to Whole Foods: “We had many complete strangers stop us, with tears in their eyes, saying they have been praying for Lo and for our family.”

She recently posted that her daughter is adjusting to her new life and that simple tasks such as “typing an email” are heightened.

“Many have told us how the accident has them seriously thinking about how important God needs to be in their lives, or how it has helped them refocus where they have gotten off track in their spiritual walk.”

In addition to losing her hand and eye, Lauren Scruggs suffered from brain injuries and scaring to half of her face.

Doctors removed her left eye on December 15 and since then she has been in intensive therapy to relearn how to walk, talk, use a stationary bike and even dress herself.

Friends, family and members of the community have so far raised $10,000 to help with her medical bills.

Most recently Lauren Scruggs’ twin sister Brittany Morgan reported feeling sympathetic pain in her own left eye.

“Being twins, and having a bond that most never understand, Britt’s left eye has been twitching for the last 4-5 days every 30 seconds or so,” their mother wrote late last month.

“She knows it’s because of the deep connection she and Lo have, and God allowing her to go through this with her at the <<twin>> level.”

In the build-up to the holiday, Lauren Scruggs’ mother reported her daughter/stylist and fashion blogger’s further strides in her recovery.

She managed to cook scrambled eggs, dress herself, brush her teeth and her hair and take a shower without help, her mother wrote on the webpage.

“Lo is making remarkable strides!” Lauren Scruggs’ mother wrote.

“Her spirit is incredible. She’s positive, hungry and cheery! Her appetite is very healthy, even though she is still taking lots of pain medication.”

December 3rd 2011: Lauren Scruggs walks into an aeroplane propeller at Aero County Airport in McKinney, Texas. She is hospitalized with serious injuries.

December 5th: Lauren Scruggs talks for the first time since the accident, saying her name and telling her family: “I love you.”

December 7th: Lauren Scruggs takes her first steps, but is still being operated on.

December 8th: Lauren Scruggs sees her face in the mirror and says: ‘It’s not that bad.’

December 10th: Lauren Scruggs smiles and raises her eyebrows, showing that her facial nerves were not as badly damaged as was initially feared.

December 12th: Lauren Scruggs is back on solid foods and eats sweet potatoes and hard-boiled eggs.

December 14th: Doctors operate on Lauren Scruggs to remove her left eye, usually a very painful operation.

January 3rd 2012: Lauren Scruggs leaves hospital for the first time, taking a trip to Whole Foods with her mother.

January 9th: Lauren Scruggs returns to her website, LoLo, to post a message of thanks for her supporters, family and friends.

The Italian rescue teams have decided to resume their work aboard the wrecked cruise ship, Costa Concordia, off the coast of Tuscany.

Operations were suspended on Wednesday as Costa Concordia shifted its position. More than 20 people are still missing.

Salvage operators are standing by to start pumping fuel from the ship’s tanks to avoid a potential environmental disaster.

Costa Concordia cruise ship ran aground on Friday with some 4,200 people on board, tourists and crew. At least 11 people were killed.

The bodies of two French victims have been identified by relatives, the French embassy in Rome confirms, AFP news agency reports.

Rescue workers have now almost completed their investigation of the fourth level of the ship.

Earlier, coastguard spokesman Filippo Marini said the ship had been stabilized.

“The tests during the night were positive and we have divers going down now,” Filippo Marini told reporters, AFP news agency says.

“We will then use the micro-explosives to open more holes. They will enter inside the ship and search for more people.”

A specialist team from a Dutch salvage company is preparing to pump more than 2,300 tons of fuel from the ship’s 17 tanks.

Mike Lacey, of the International Salvage Union, says the operation could take some time.

“[The fuel] is spread around 17 tanks. The quantities in each tank will obviously be different, and the people there involved in the operation of removing the oil are experts at this sort of thing – and they know exactly what to do,” Mike Lacey.

“They’ll be drilling into each tank, and pumping the oil out and putting it into a barge or a coastal tanker or even a tug.

“These things are all very weather-dependent. If the weather turns against them, then they won’t be able to work. So I understand they expect to take a week to two weeks to get all the fuel off.”

 

Costa Concordia cruise ship ran aground on Friday with some 4,200 people on board, tourists and crew

Costa Concordia cruise ship ran aground on Friday with some 4,200 people on board, tourists and crew

Some 300 Philippine crew members of the Costa Concordia have arrived back in Manila.

They looked visibly shaken by their ordeal.

Some crew members said they did their job well, making sure their passengers were safe, but found the captain and officers had already left the ship by the time the “abandon ship” message was given. They said they felt angry and let down.

“It’s… horrible because it is supposed to be the captain to [be] the last one to stay on the ship if there is a collision like this and not the passengers and the crew members,” said Andrew Bacud, a steward on the ship.

On Wednesday, the first of the 11 confirmed dead to be identified was a 38-year-old Hungarian violinist, Sandor Feher.

His body was found in the wreck and identified by his mother.

The ship’s captain, Francesco Schettino, has yesterday admitted to making a navigational error, Italian media reported.

Francesco Schettino told investigators he had “ordered the turn too late” as the luxury ship sailed close to an island, according to a leaked interrogation transcript.

Captain Francesco Schettino is under house arrest on suspicion of multiple manslaughter. Prosecutors have also accused him of fleeing the ship before evacuation was complete.

Francesco Schettino, the captain of Costa Concordia cruise ship that capsized on Friday, killing at least 11 people, has admitted making a navigation mistake, Italian media say.

Francesco Schettino, 52, told investigators he had “ordered the turn too late” as the luxury ship sailed close to an island, according to a leaked interrogation transcript.

The Costa Concordia ran aground with about 4,200 people on board.

More than 20 people are still missing but the search for survivors has been halted.

According to the leaked transcript quoted by Italian media, Captain Francesco Schettino said the route of the Costa Concordia on the first day of its Mediterranean cruise had been decided as it left the port of Civitavecchia, near Rome, on Friday.

Francesco Schettino reportedly told the investigating judge in the city of Grosseto that he had decided to sail close to Giglio to salute a former captain who had a home on the Tuscan island.

“I was navigating by sight because I knew the depths well and I had done this manoeuvre three or four times,” Francesco Schettino reportedly said.

“But this time I ordered the turn too late and I ended up in water that was too shallow. I don’t know why it happened.”

The ship’s owners, Costa Crociere, said earlier this week that the change of route had not been authorized.

On Tuesday, Captain Francesco Schettino’s lawyer said his client had told the judge that lives had been saved thanks to the manoeuvre he made after the ship hit rocks.

Francesco Schettino, the captain of Costa Concordia cruise ship that capsized on Friday, killing at least 11 people, has admitted making a navigation mistake

Francesco Schettino, the captain of Costa Concordia cruise ship that capsized on Friday, killing at least 11 people, has admitted making a navigation mistake

Francesco Schettino is under house arrest on suspicion of multiple manslaughter. Prosecutors have also accused him of fleeing the ship before evacuation was complete.

A recording of a call between him and a port official after the crash appears to support this, though Captain Francesco Schettino denies the claims.

In the recording, released by the Corriere della Sera newspaper, Livorno Port Authority chief Gregorio De Falco can be heard repeatedly telling the captain to get back on board to help passengers.

“Schettino, maybe you saved yourself from the sea, but I’ll make you have trouble for sure. Go aboard,” says Gregorio De Falco.

Francesco Schettino appears to refuse, replying first that there are rescuers already on board, and then that it is dark and difficult to see.

Coastguards believe he never went back to the ship. He was arrested on the island shortly afterwards.

During the hearing, Francesco Schettino reportedly said he could not get on board the vessel because it was lying on its side.

Italian media also quote Francesco Schettino as telling the judge he had left the ship accidentally after tripping and falling into a rescue craft.

If the reports of Francesco Schettino’s answers under questioning are correct, then this amounts to an admission of the most reckless incompetence.

Meanwhile, the first dead victim to be identified was a 38-year-old Hungarian violinist, Sandor Feher.

His body was found in the wreck and identified by his mother, Hungary’s foreign ministry said on Wednesday.

The search for survivors has been suspended, with officials saying there is a risk of the Costa Concordia sinking completely in rough seas.

Officials are hoping to begin salvage work soon, including pumping oil off the wreck. There are fears the vessel might slip into deeper water off the Tuscan coast.

A specialist team from a Dutch salvage company is preparing to pump more than 2,300 tons of fuel from the ship’s 17 tanks.

Italian Environment Minister Corrado Clini said it should take about 10 days to pump all the fuel out of the ship. He said if the fuel could not be contained the local environment was at risk.

“If we consider 2,400 tons of fuel, the damage could be terrible,” Corrado Clini said.

Corrado Clini said the government would declare a state of emergency later this week to release state funds to deal with any environmental problems

Meanwhile, satellite tracking information published by shipping journal Lloyd’s List Intelligence shows the Costa Concordia had sailed even closer to the island on a cruise last August.

Lloyd’s List said that the vessel passed within 230m of the island on 14 August 2011 to mark La Notte di San Lorenzo – the night of the shooting stars festival on the island.

The route deviation on that occasion had apparently been authorized by Costa Crociere.

Lloyd’s List describes that occasion as a “near miss” and says the ship’s route would have been less than 200m away from the point of collision on Friday’s voyage.

But Richard Meade, editor of Lloyd’s List, said: “The company’s account of what happened, of the rogue master [Capt Francesco Schettino] taking a bad decision, isn’t quite as black and white as they presented originally.

“This ship took a very similar route only a few months previously and the master would have known that.”

Salvage work on Costa Concordia cruise ship is expected to begin later on Wednesday, as hopes fade that any more survivors will be found on the stricken cruise ship.

Rescuers have been through almost all of the ship that remains above the water line and experts believe there is little risk of a major fuel leak.

Eleven bodies have been recovered so far and 24 people are missing.

The captain of the Italian ship, Francesco Schettino is under house arrest, accused of causing the crash.

Salvage work on Costa Concordia cruise ship is expected to begin later on Wednesday, as hopes fade that any more survivors will be found on the stricken cruise ship

Salvage work on Costa Concordia cruise ship is expected to begin later on Wednesday, as hopes fade that any more survivors will be found on the stricken cruise ship

Along with the salvage workers – who will begin operations once rescue efforts have been declared over – a specialist team from Dutch salvage company SMIT is to start drilling through the ship towards the 17 tanks that hold more than 2,000 tons of fuel.

The firm says this could take several weeks.

The announcement that Captain Francesco Schettino would be held under house arrest instead of in jail came as prosecutors accused him of causing the crash and also of fleeing the Costa Concordia while passengers were still stranded.

A recording of a call between him and a port official after the crash appears to support this, though Captain Francesco Schettino denies the claims.

In the recording, released by the Corriere della Sera newspaper, Livorno Port Authority chief Gregorio de Falco can be heard repeatedly telling the captain to get back on board the ship to help the stranded passengers.

“Schettino, maybe you saved yourself from the sea, but I’ll make you have trouble for sure. Go aboard,” says Gregorio De Falco.

Francesco Schettino appears to refuse, replying first that there are rescuers already on board, and then that it is dark and difficult to see.

Gregorio De Falco replies: “Do you want to go home, Schettino? It’s dark, so you want to go home?”

Coastguards believe Captain Francesco Schettino never went back to the ship. He was arrested shortly afterwards.

But during a court hearing on Tuesday, the captain said he could not get on board the vessel because it was lying on its side.

Francesco Schettino argued that after hitting rocks he had executed a difficult manoeuvre that had saved many people’s lives.

The ship, carrying 4,200 passengers and crew, had its hull ripped open when it hit rocks late on Friday, just hours after leaving the port of Civitavecchia for a week-long Mediterranean cruise.

Some people were forced to swim for shore as the angle of the ship made launching lifeboats impossible.

Meanwhile, satellite tracking information published in the shipping journal Lloyd’s List Intelligence shows that the Costa Concordia sailed closer to Giglio island on a cruise last August than it did on its disastrous voyage on Friday.

Lloyd’s List said that the vessel passed within 230m of the island on 14 August 2011 to mark La Notte di San Lorenzo – the night of the shooting stars festival on the island.

The route deviation on that occasion had apparently been authorized by Costa Cruises – the company which owns the vessel.

The company said on Monday that the ship was never closer than 500 m to the coast when it passed on 14 August.

Lloyd’s List describes that occasion as a “near miss” and says the ship’s route would have been less than 200 m away from the point of collision on Friday’s voyage.

Costa Cruises said on Monday that the route deviation last Friday had been “unauthorized, unapproved and unknown to Costa”.

But Richard Meade, the Editor of Lloyd’s List, said: “The company’s account of what happened, of the rogue master [Capt Schettino] taking a bad decision, isn’t quite as black and white as they presented originally.”

“This ship took a very similar route only a few months previously and the master would have known that.”

Costa Cruises says it is looking into the claims, but stands by the statement it gave on Monday.

Meanwhile, Lloyd’s List says the issue of which nautical charts the captain of the vessel was using looks likely to be critical to his defense if he does face a criminal prosecution.

Francesco Schettino, the captain of Costa Concordia cruise ship who steered his vessel onto rocks on Friday, killing 11 people has been put under house arrest by Italian judges.

Prosecutors say Francesco Schettino caused the accident through negligence, and then fled the Costa Concordia while passengers were still stranded.

A recording of a call between Captain Francesco Schettino and a port official shortly after the crash appears to support some of the prosecutors’ accusations.

Captain Francesco Schettino denies the claims.

The local authority says 20 passengers are still missing. They include people from Germany, Italy, France and the US.

Four crew members – one each from Italy, Hungary, India and Peru – are also missing.

In the recording, released by the Corriere della Sera newspaper, Livorno Port Authority chief Gregorio de Falco can be heard repeatedly telling the captain to get back on board the ship to help the stranded passengers.

“Schettino, maybe you saved yourself from the sea, but I’ll make you have trouble for sure. Go aboard,” says Gregorio De Falco.

Francesco Schettino appears to refuse, replying first that there are rescuers already on board, and then that it is dark and difficult to see.

Gregorio De Falco replies: “Do you want to go home, Schettino? It’s dark, so you want to go home?”

Coastguards believe he never went back to the ship. He was arrested shortly afterwards and has been held in jail since.

But during a court hearing on Tuesday, Francesco Schettino said he could not get on board the vessel because it was lying on its side.

He argued that after hitting rocks he had executed a difficult manoeuvre that had saved many people’s lives.

Francesco Schettino, the captain of Costa Concordia cruise ship who steered his vessel onto rocks on Friday, killing 11 people has been put under house arrest by Italian judges

Francesco Schettino, the captain of Costa Concordia cruise ship who steered his vessel onto rocks on Friday, killing 11 people has been put under house arrest by Italian judges

Francesco Schettino’s lawyer Bruno Leporatti later announced that the judge had decided to release the captain from jail and place him under house arrest.

Prosecutor Francesco Verusio, who had argued that Captain Francesco Schettino was a flight risk, said he did not understand the ruling.

“I’m keen to read the reasoning,” he said.

Meanwhile, rescuers found six more bodies in the wreck of the ship on Tuesday, bringing the confirmed death toll to 11.

“The five victims are a woman and four men, who could be passengers, but we are not sure,” said coastguard spokesman Filippo Marini.

He added that the dead people were between 50 and 60 years old, and were wearing life-jackets.

The bodies were found near one of the assembly points where people were told to gather in an emergency.

The authorities are also battling to avoid an environmental disaster, amid fears that the cruise ship’s fuel tanks could break apart and shed thousands of tons of diesel into the sea.

Specialist salvage teams have been drafted in, and are due to start pumping the fuel out in the coming days.

The ship, carrying 4,200 passengers and crew, had its hull ripped open when it hit rocks late on Friday, just hours after leaving the port of Civitavecchia for a week-long Mediterranean cruise.

Some people were forced to swim for shore as the angle of the ship made launching lifeboats impossible.

Infrared footage taken from a helicopter showed lines of people climbing ropes down the exposed hull of the vessel to reach rescue boats on the water.

On Monday, the shipping newspaper Lloyd’s List said it had been able to trace the course of the Costa Concordia through information from satellites.

Lloyd’s List issued a graphic comparing Friday’s sailing with an earlier sailing by the vessel, suggesting that Friday’s route had deviated far from its usual course.

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Audio recording of the conversation between Captain Francesco Schettino and Port Authority officials after the doomed Italian luxury cruise liner Costa Concordia struck rocks Friday was released Tuesday morning.

At least eleven people were killed in the aftermath and dozens more are still missing. The follow is a translation of the recording, which was posted on the news website Corriere della Sera.

“Captain Schettino: It’s Captain Schettino.

Port Authority: Schettino, listen to me, there are people trapped onboard, now you go back, you will go with your rescue boat under the stern of the ship, there are some steps, you climb those steps and you get onboard and you get back to me letting me know how many people are on board. Is that clear to you? I am actually recording this conversation captain.

[inaudible, captain mumbles]

PA: Speak in a loud voice.

Captain: So, the ship right now [inaudible]…

PA: Speak in a loud voice! Put your hand by the microphone to cover it and speak up! Is that clear?

Voices in the background: Tell him to come here. Tell him to come here.

Captain: So, right now the ship is tilted…

PA: I understand that. Listen to me, there are people that are getting off using the rope ladder on the stern side, you go back there and you go up that ladder the opposite way, you go onboard the ship and you tell me how many people [are there] And what they need. You tell me if there are children, women or people that need assistance and you give me a number for each one of these categories is that clear? Look Schettino, you may have saved yourself from the sea but will put you through a lot of trouble it will be very bad for you! Get back on board for [expletive]’s sake!!!

Captain: Officer, please.

PA: There are no “pleases”! Get back on board! Please assure me that you are going back on board.

Captain: I am here on the rescue boat. I’m right here, I didn’t go anywhere else, I’m here.

PA: What are you doing captain?

Captain: I’m here to coordinate rescue operations.

PA: What are you coordinating? Get back on board and coordinate rescue operations from onboard the ship.

[silence, sound cuts out]

PA: Do you refuse to do that?

Captain: No, I’m not refusing to do that.

PA: Are you refusing to back on board?

Captain: No, I am not refusing to go back. I am not going because the other rescue boat stopped.

PA: Get back on board! This is an order! You don’t need to make any other assessment. You have declared that you have abandoned ship, therefore I’m in command. Get back on board right now is that clear?

Captain: Officer…

PA: Can you not hear me?

Captain: I’m getting back on board.

PA: Then go! And call me right away when you are on board. There’s my rescuer there.

Captain: Where is your rescuer?

PA: My rescuer is on the stern side, go! There are already bodies, Schettino! Go!

Captain: Officer how many bodies are there?

PA: I don’t know. I know about one… I’ve heard about one, but you must tell me! [expletive]!

Captain: Do you realize it’s dark out here and we can’t see anything?

PA: What do you want to do ? Do you want to go home? It’s dark so you want to go home? Get on the stern of that ship climb the ladder and tell me what can be done, how many people are there and what they need. Right now!

Captain: I’m here with my second officer.

[Schettino identifies second officer.]

PA: You and your second officer must get back on board right now is that clear?

Captain: I just wanted to tell you that the other rescue boat here with other rescuers stopped. It’s just stopped. Now I’ve called the other rescuers.

PA: You’ve been telling me the same thing for an hour now get back on board! On board! And you get back to me right away telling me how many people are there.

Captain: It’s fine officer, I’m going.

PA: Then go, right now!

[A second recording appears to show another conversation between Captain Francesco Schettino and the Port Authority:]

Captain: I have spoken with the company, and there seem to be some people still onboard, possibly about one hundred.

PA: And you can’t even give me a precise number? You say “there seem to be”?

Captain: Well, we were carrying out evacuation procedures, but now all the officers have gathered on the rescue boat with me.

PA: Where are you guys? All on the reascue boat? Excuse me, earlier you told me you where with one colleague only — now all the officers are there?

Captain: Yes, there’s me, my second officer, and…

PA: If the officers were able to get down there, it means they were still able to move…

Captain: Indeed, now…

PA: Then why are they not going back on board to see what the situation is like and then tell us about it, thank you? Send them on board! Send someone on board to coordinate!

Captain: Now it’s not…

PA: Send someone back on board!

Captain: I am coordinating…

PA: I am giving you an order, Captain. You must send someone onboard!

Captain: We are going on board to coordinate ourselves…

PA: Exactly! You must go onboard to coordinate the disembarking! Is that clear?

Captain: But we can no longer get on board now, the ship has sunk completely.

PA: Why did you allow them to get off, Captain?

Captain: I didn’t… We abandoned ship.

PA: And with 100 people still on board you abandon ship? [expletive]

Captain: I didn’t abandon any ship… because the ship turned on its side quickly and we were catapulted into the water.

PA: We’ll clarify later what actually happened… for now tell me everything that goes on, everything! Place yourself under the ship with your rescue boat and don’t leave.

Captain: We’re here. We’re here.”

A housemate on Brazil’s Big Brother reality show has been raped live on TV, it has been alleged.

Brazilian police today confirmed they had begun an investigation and carried out a search of the studios in Rio de Janeiro, where Big Brother show is being filmed.

Viewers were shocked in the early hours of Sunday to watch contestant Daniel Echaniz, 31, apparently force himself 23-year-old student Monique Amin, who had passed out drunk after a boozy party.

Night cameras filmed Daniel Echaniz, a male model, get into the bed where Monique Amin was sleeping before appearing to have sex with her under the covers.

Throughout the incident the female contestant appeared unconscious.

The next morning Monique Amin was asked about the incident in the diary room, and appeared to know little of what had happened.

Brazilian police today confirmed they had begun an investigation and carried out a search of the studios in Rio de Janeiro, where Big Brother show is being filmed

Brazilian police today confirmed they had begun an investigation and carried out a search of the studios in Rio de Janeiro, where Big Brother show is being filmed

As the scandal began to engulf the show, one of Brazil’s most watched TV programmes, police officers arrived at the house and interviewed Monique Amin for three hours, before taking her away for a rape examination, according to sources.

Police are believed to have then told TV channel Globo to either stop broadcasting the show, which is produced by Endemol and only began last Tuesday, or eliminate Daniel Echaniz.

The decision to remove the contestant, who if found guilty of rape faces between six and ten years’ jail, was explained in a statement read out by the show’s presenter Pedro Bial.

Pedro Bial said: “Since Sunday morning, the board had been evaluating the behavior of Daniel, who is suspected of having infringed the rules of the programme.

“Big Brother examined his behavior without jumping to conclusions and with the utmost care. The images showed a breach of the rules of the programme.

“After careful evaluation, the direction of the programme found that the behavior of the contestant on the night of the party was seriously inadequate.”

Makers Endemol – which is known for encouraging outrageous behaviour among its contestants – today refused to comment on the latest scandal to rock the worldwide Big Brother format.

Big Brother Brazil, which is in its 12th series, is watched by an average TV audience of eight million. In last year’s final over 154 million votes were cast.

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A restaurant in Pasadena, California, has claimed that it was in its kitchen that the cheeseburger, probably one of the most popular dishes of all time, was first invented, in the late 1920s.

Local diner the Rite Spot says young chef Lionel Sternberger accidentally burned one side of the hamburger he was cooking.

The Pasadena Chamber of Commerce’s Paul Little told CNN: “Rather than throwing it in the trash, he flipped it over and put a bit of cheese on it to hide his mistake and served it to a customer, who was delighted to have it.”

Now the town is celebrating the cheeseburger’s humble origins with a week of events in its honour.

And it is certainly worthy of the tribute. Throughout the subsequent 90 years, the cheeseburger has seen many incarnations.

Local diner the Rite Spot in Pasadena, California, has claimed that it was in its kitchen that the cheeseburger was first invented, in the late 1920s

Local diner the Rite Spot in Pasadena, California, has claimed that it was in its kitchen that the cheeseburger was first invented, in the late 1920s

McDonalds introduced the double cheeseburger as a promotional item in the Fifties, and it has since become a staple in restaurants across the world.

And twists on the theme vary from the bizarre to the sublime.

The Wall Street Burger Shoppe secured the title of New York’s most expensive burger when it unveiled an $175 sandwich in 2008.

Within the gold leaf-flecked brioche bun is a “Kobe beef patty, lots of black truffles, seared foie gras, aged Gruyere cheese, and wild mushrooms”.

Far fewer cheeseburger lovers, we imagine, would be tempted by a new dish at Fatty’s in San Antonio, Texas.

Its new ice-cream cheeseburger boasts a scoop of fried ice-cream on a beef patty.

Owner Mark Outing, who also lists a pancake cheeseburger and a fried egg burger on his menu, believes his culinary inventiveness will prove a hit.

Mark Outing told mysanantonio.com: “Most of these burgers are things people have eaten before. They perhaps just haven’t thought of piling them on top of one another.”

An incredible infrared footage has emerged today showing survivors of Costa Concordia slipping down the belly of the stricken cruise ship one-by-one using a rope.

The black-and-white video, taken by the Italian Coastguard, shows passengers queueing up to get into lifeboats.

The film has been released after a French survivor today claimed that panicking crew were already “fleeing in their life jackets” before passengers were warned the cruise liner was sinking.

Pensioner Daniele Perruchon, 68, also said men shoved past children screaming “I don’t want to die” as they raced to save themselves aboard the sinking ship.

Daniele Perruchon was travelling with an elderly friend celebrating her 80th birthday when the chaos erupted on Friday night.

An incredible infrared footage has emerged today showing survivors of Costa Concordia slipping down the belly of the stricken cruise ship one-by-one using a rope

An incredible infrared footage has emerged today showing survivors of Costa Concordia slipping down the belly of the stricken cruise ship one-by-one using a rope

The woman said they were abandoned in the darkness as the giant ship listed after striking rocks off Italian island of Giglio.

She and her friend were having dinner when the lights went out and crockery began crashing around them, she told French newspaper Nice-Matin.

Daniele Perruchon said: “At that point a loud speaker announcement in Italian said <<The electrical circuit of the stabilizers has cut out. This is not a problem>>.

“Then as we were waiting in the gloom we saw terrified staff dashing past us in their life jackets. People were shouting and pushing each other.

“I was with an elderly person and determined not to panic. We made it back to our cabin and got our life jackets, then managed to reach one of the decks.

“Then we felt the ship begin tipping over. There was mass panic. The ship was at a steep angle and people were trying to reach the life boats by clinging to the walls.

“A woman fell on me and we went crashing into a telephone cabin. We managed to get into a life boat but it was unable to launch, and we were eventually taken off it by the Italian coastguard.

“At no time did anyone come and help us. We felt abandoned. So much for women and children first.

“I heard children crying out <<I don’t want to die>> as men pushed past trying to get themselves off the boat.”

Daniele Perruchon, from the French Riviera resort of Menton, said the cruise had been meant as a “dream holiday” for her and her elderly friend.

She said: “We have decided the first thing we are going to do is get straight back on another cruise liner to beat the fear.”

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Rescue teams have found five more bodies inside the Italian Costa Concordia stricken cruise ship, raising the confirmed death toll to 11.

According to officials, four men and a woman were found on the ship, which capsized after it hit rocks in Ialy on Friday.

Judges are questioning the ship’s captain, Francesco Schettino, who has been blamed for steering the vessel on to the rocks.

Captain Francesco Schettino has been detained on suspicion of manslaughter, but denies any wrongdoing.

He has not yet been formally charged, but prosecutors on Tuesday asked judges to continue his detention.

Rescue teams have found five more bodies inside the Italian Costa Concordia stricken cruise ship, raising the confirmed death toll to 11

Rescue teams have found five more bodies inside the Italian Costa Concordia stricken cruise ship, raising the confirmed death toll to 11

A recording of a conversation allegedly between the captain and a port official – recorded shortly after the crash – has emerged which suggests Captain Francesco Schettino left the ship before all passengers had escaped.

In the recording, on the Corriere della Sera’s website, Captain Francesco Schettino appears to refuse to go back on to the ship to co-ordinate the rescue effort.

A man who identifies himself as Livorno Port Authority chief Gregorio de Falco can be heard repeatedly telling the captain to get back on board the ship to help the stranded passengers.

“Schettino, maybe you saved yourself from the sea, but I’ll make you have trouble for sure. Go aboard,” says Gregorio de Falco.

Captain Francesco Schettino is heard replying first that there are rescuers already on board, and then that it is dark and difficult to see.

Shortly after daybreak on Tuesday rescue crews blasted several holes in the ship, now lying on its side metres from Giglio island, in order to gain access to areas they had not yet been able to search.

Hours later, the coast guard announced that more bodies had been found.

It is not clear whether the bodies are crew members or passengers, but the coast guard said they were aged between 50 and 60 and were wearing life vests.

The bodies were found near one of the assembly points where people were told to gather in an emergency.

Before the bodies were discovered, Italian officials said there were 29 people still missing from the vessel.

Teams of specialist divers have been helping with the rescue mission, but they have been hampered by bad weather.

The ship, carrying 4,200 passengers and crew, had its hull ripped open when it hit rocks late on Friday, just hours after leaving the port of Civitavecchia for a week-long Mediterranean cruise.

Some people were forced to swim for shore as the angle of the ship made launching lifeboats impossible.

Infrared footage taken from a helicopter, also released on Tuesday, shows lines of people climbing ropes down the exposed hull of the vessel to reach rescue boats on the water.

Francesco Schettino, 52, has emerged as the central figure in the investigation.

The Costa Concordia’s owners, Costa Cruises, have said Captain Francesco Schettino hit the rocks because he deliberately steered the ship towards Giglio Island.

Prosecutors have given more detail, saying the captain wanted to make a close pass of Giglio in order to “salute” a crew member’s family who lived there.

On Monday, the shipping newspaper Lloyd’s List said it had been able to trace the course of the Costa Concordia though information from satellites.

Lloyd’s List issued a graphic comparing Friday’s sailing with an earlier sailing by the vessel, suggesting that Friday’s route had deviated far from its usual course.

Francesco Schettino, the captain of doomed Costa Concordia cruise ship and the man who is now at the centre of one of Italy’s worse maritime disasters, is currently under arrest.

Francesco Schettino faces possible charges of manslaughter, causing a shipwreck and abandoning ship, charges he denies.

Francesco Schettino is 52-year-old and his life has been dominated by the sea.

Born in the coastal town of Castellammare di Stabia, near the southern city of Naples, Francesco Schettino attended a nautical institute in the nearby town of Piano di Sorrento.

Few personal details are known about Francesco Schettino and his family, which is based in the Naples town of Meta. Members of his family have said they are no longer giving interviews to the press. Francesco Schettino lives in Meta with his wife and their 15-year-old daughter.

But speculation is swirling about how Costa Concordia, the vast ship he captained, almost a floating city with its 4,300 passengers and crew members, ended its journey aground and on its side, metres from the Tuscan island of Giglio.

Francesco Schettino, the captain of doomed Costa Concordia cruise ship and the man who is now at the centre of one of Italy's worse maritime disasters, is currently under arrest

Francesco Schettino, the captain of doomed Costa Concordia cruise ship and the man who is now at the centre of one of Italy's worse maritime disasters, is currently under arrest

Francesco Schettino joined Costa Cruises in 2002, initially as an official in charge of security. He was promoted to the role of captain in 2006, having been second-in-command.

As reports of an unplanned change of course and a terrifying and chaotic evacuation process have multiplied, the firm has been quick to distance itself from the captain who, it said, had made “serious errors of judgement”.

Costa Crociere CEO Luigi Foschi said Francesco Schettino changed a pre-programmed route to make a manoeuvre that was “unauthorised, unapproved and unknown to Costa”.

“The captain has the authority to take the decisions on board. In this case, the captain decided to change the route and he went into waters that he did not know in advance,” Luigi Foschi said.

Italian newspapers have speculated that the change of course may have been a daring deviation, a kind of maritime tribute to one of the crew members who was from the small island.

The reason for the dramatic shift in route will only be revealed by the criminal investigation but, in a television interview given hours after the ship capsized, Francesco Schettino’s shock and disbelief is clear.

“I firmly believe that the rock was not shown,” he tells the reporter, seemingly incredulous at what had happened.

“We didn’t hit it with the bow of the boat, but from the side, as if this rock had some kind of spike beneath the water. I don’t know if it was picked up or not but on the nautical chart it said that we should have had deep water beneath us. […] We were about 300 metres from the rocks, more or less, we shouldn’t have hit anything,” Francesco Schettino said.

In an earlier interview, francesco Schettino was full of confidence in his abilities and the technology that underpins modern cruise ship travel. But some of his words may come back to haunt him.

“I wouldn’t want to be the captain of the Titanic, forced to navigate between icebergs,” Francesco Schettino told a reporter from Czech newspaper Dnes in 2010.

“But I think that with the right preparation any situation can be overcome and any problem prevented,” he added.

When asked whether the 1997 film Titanic had discouraged people from going on a cruise, Francesco Schettino’s response was: “Luckily, people forget tragedies quickly. It’s like plane crashes. Everyone thinks that it couldn’t happen to them.”

As the accusations against Francesco Schettino grow, there have been those who have come to his defense, setting up a Facebook page with 1,500 fans.

Many of them are sailors themselves who have commented on how Francesco Schettino’s decision to steer the ship towards port after it collided with the rock had probably saved dozens of lives.

According to an interview in Naples-based Il Mattino newspaper quoting his sister, the first person Francesco Schettino called after the incident was his 80-year-old mother, Rosa.

“He called her at five in the morning on Saturday to tell her there had been a disaster, that he had tried to save as many passengers as possible and not to worry, because it was all over,” his sister said.

Francesco Schettino, the Costa Concordia’s captain did abandon ship “half an hour” before hundreds of his passengers, it emerged this morning via a transcript of a conversation between him and the local coastguard.

Captain Francesco Schettino, 52, who will be questioned today by investigating magistrate Valeria Montesarchio, lied to the Captain of the Port of Livorno’s Coastguard when asked how many people were on board the sinking liner, Italian media reported today.

Francesco Schettino initially replied “40”, when there were actually hundreds still at risk, and when further questioned admitted he was not even there.

The Costa Concordia captain then ignored an order to go back onto the sinking ship – with some reports suggesting he volunteered to return, but only to pick up the black box.

Il Fatto Quotidiano published the transcripts of the conversation which purportedly took place on Friday night.

The first call to the boat took place at 9:49 p.m., where the coastguard asked what the situation was. The boat had run aground some 30 minutes before.

They did not speak again until 0:42 a.m., just 40 minutes after the evacuation started, when Francesco Schettino was asked how many people were on board.

He replied “40”. The coastguard, surprised, asked how there were so few people left on board, and francesco Schettino replied: “I’m not on board because we have abandoned the ship.”

The coastguard asked him to return to the ship to co-ordinate the evacuation.

At 1:46 a.m., Francesco Schettino received another call. The speaker said: “You will return to the boat immediately. You have to tell me how many passengers are left.”

Confusingly, Francesco Schettino replied: “I’m on board, but I’m here.” The coastguard, who Italian media says understood he had no intention of returning, issued an ultimatum:

“Captain, this is an order. I am in charge now. There are dead bodies.”

The publication of the transcript comes as Francesco Schettino was labeled the “most hated man in Italy”.

And it precedes the revelation, from a survivor, that men pushed past children who were screaming “I don’t want to die” as the young and elderly were “abandoned by the crew”.

A state of emergency has been declared around the stricken Costa Concordia after an unidentified liquid began to leak from the ship

A state of emergency has been declared around the stricken Costa Concordia after an unidentified liquid began to leak from the ship

Captain Francesco Schettino, who lives with wife Fabiola and their 15-year-old daughter at a $275,000 apartment in the small seaside town of Meta di Sorrento near Naples, is at the centre of a Facebook hate campaign after being squarely blamed for the cruise liner running aground.

Thousands have taken to the web to vent their fury at the so-called “Captain Coward”, who it is now claimed “skimmed” past the Tuscan isle of Giglio not just to salute a retired officer but also to impress his head waiter’s family on shore.

Many scorned his decision not to remain with his stricken ship. The official death toll rose to seven this morning after another body was pulled from the tilting wreckage. Last night the number of those still unaccounted for rose to 29 – 25 passengers and four crew.

Francesco Schettino, who faces up to 12 years in jail for manslaughter, will appear in court today after his company chiefs accused him of an “unauthorised and unapproved” decision to sail so close to the eastern side of the island of Giglio.

Costa Concordia, the $600million liner, with 4,200 passengers and crew, was sailing just 300 yards from the island’s rocky coast when it should have been at least four miles out to sea. It came to grief on Friday night after sustaining a 160ft gash in the port-side hull.

After swiftly escaping from the listing liner, Francesco Schettino was arrested along with first officer Ciro Ambrosio.

Captain Francesco Schettino was spotted wrapped in a blanket on his way to the shore at around 11:30 p.m. – more than four hours before the evacuation of the vessel was completed – and breaking the maritime tradition of remaining with his ship.

One Italian report said Francesco Schettino hailed a taxi and said to the driver: “Get me as far away from here as possible.”

Tuscan prosecutor Franco Verusio, who is leading the investigation, said: “Captain Schettino was in command. He was the one who ordered that course to be taken, at least according to what we have discovered. There was someone in particular that wanted to be signaled from the ship.”

Francesco Schettino gave the order for the doomed sail-by of the island as a “salute of respect” for former Costa commander Mario Palombo, whose parents are from Giglio, it is alleged.

The stunt – as passengers were enjoying dinner at 9:30 p.m. on Friday – was apparently also a favour for the ship’s maître d’ Antonello Tievoli, who lives on the island.

Italian news reports said that that minutes before Costa Concordia crashed into an underwater reef just two hours into a seven-day Mediterranean cruise, Francesco Schettino told the head waiter: “Come and look, we are passing over your Giglio.”

After his rescue, Antonello Tievoli is understood to have joked: “I never thought I would get dropped off at home.”

His 82-year-old father Giuseppe said his son had phoned him before the accident to say the crew would salute him by blowing the ship’s whistle as they passed by.

Giuseppe Tievoli said: “Antonello called and said that we should look out of the window at around 9:30 p.m. because he would be on the ship and it would pass right by Giglio. All the ships do it but they never come that close – I was at the window with my wife and, as he said, the ship went past.”

Antonello Tievoli’s sister Patrizia, a teacher on the island, made a Facebook post 30 minutes before the disaster saying: “Shortly, the Costa Concordia will pass really, really close, a big hello to my brother who will disembark at Savona and finally get to enjoy some holiday.”

Antonello Tievoli, 46, has already been questioned by investigators while Mario Palombo, who retired in 2006 because of ill health, is also expected to be interviewed.

Mario Palombo last night insisted the “nautical bow” was not meant for him as he was not on the island at the time.

“I have gone to the prosecutor’s office after I was dragged into all this. I’ve been made to feel responsible.”

The stunt of sailing past the island is said to have become something of a tradition for Costa Concordia. In August, it skirted Giglio sounding its whistle – prompting the mayor to send a congratulatory email to the captain for providing such a “spectacle to tourists”.

A state of emergency has been declared around the stricken vessel after an unidentified liquid began to leak from the ship. Protective barriers have been put in place around the Costa Concordia.

Speaking to Sky News, Giglio mayor Sergio Ortelli said: “This is an ecological timebomb.

“I hope that the fuel can be taken off the ship soon and maybe the ship can be removed too because it is hampering navigation.”

Francesco Schettino has also been accused of dining with beautiful women as the liner crashed into rocks and of raiding the safe before jumping ship.

Monique Maurek, 41, from the Netherlands, said: “What scandalized me most was when I saw the captain spending much of the evening before we hit the rocks drinking in the bar with a beautiful woman on his arm.

“Most people didn’t even have any idea of what the evacuation warning sound would be. It was only because some of us had already been on a cruise that we recognized that seven blasts of the horn was a signal to abandon ship.”

Francesco Schettino told maritime investigators that charts showed he was in water deep enough to navigate and that he had struck an unidentified rocky outcrop of the island.

Once Francesco Schettino realized the extent of the damage he immediately tried to change route and head for the safety of Giglio harbour.

His lawyer, Bruno Leporatti, said Francesco Schettino was “overcome and wants to express his greatest condolences to the victims”.

But he said Francesco Schettino’s actions in anchoring the ship at one end to swing it closer to the shore after the collision, “saved the lives of thousands of people”.

“It could have been an enormous tragedy,” Bruno Leporatti added.

Costa Crociere chairman and CEO Pier Luigi Foschi told reporters the liner had passed all safety and technical tests in its 2011 evaluation.

Explaining that the ship was “ultra safe”, Luigi Foschi said the captain had made an unauthorized and unapproved deviation from the ship’s programmed course.

Luigi Foschi said: “This route was put in correctly. The fact that it left from this course is due solely to a manoeuvre by the commander that was unapproved, unauthorized and unknown to Costa.”

Costa Crociere CEO added that the company’s main concern was the safety and well-being of the passengers and crew, as well as to ensure fuel doesn’t leak out from the upended hull into the pristine waters off the island of Giglio.

Costa Crociere is a subsidiary of Carnival Cruise lines.

Carnival PLC, the owner of the capsized boat, saw its share price plummet by around a fifth.