Costa Cruises: Italy Ship Captain Arrested on Suspicion of Multiple Manslaughter, Report

 @LauraMatt
on January 14 2012 4:52 PM
Costa Cruises Accident
Costa Concordia cruise ship that ran aground is seen off the west coast of Italy at Giglio island. Reuters

Police on Saturday said that the captain of the Costa Cruises Italian cruise liner, which ran aground off Italy, has been arrested on suspicion of multiple manslaughter charges, as well as being charged with causing a shipwreck and abandoning ship, Reuters reported. 

Francesco Schettino, the captain of the 4,200-passenger luxury cruise ship Costa Concordia, was taken to a jail in the provincial capital Grosseto in order to await questioning by a magistrate, the Reuters report noted. The ship ran aground off the coast of Tuscany and at least three people died in the accident. Some 40 people are still unaccounted for.

MSNBC reported that a U.S. State Department official has said that it is estimated that there were 126 Americans among the 4,200-plus people who were on the Costa Concordia. None of the Americans were injured, the official told MSNBC.

The accident happened on Friday evening near the island of Giglio off the coast of Tuscany.

Officials in Italy still want to know why the 114,500-ton Costa Concordia didn't issue a mayday call during the accident.

At the moment we can't exclude that the ship had some kind of technical problem, and for this reason moved towards the coast in order to save the passengers, the crew and the ship. But they didn't send a mayday, said officer Emilio Del Santo of the Coastal Authorities of Livorno, as reported by CNN. The ship got in contact with us once the evacuation procedures were already ongoing.

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