Last voyage for Costa Concordia cruise ship

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by daiquiri, Jan 14, 2012.

  1. daiquiri
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    daiquiri Engineering and Design

    The captain is currently under interrogation by the authorities, and is probably having very hard times trying to explain why did he choose to pass so close to the island. It seems to be confirmed that the planned route was the one indicated by red dotted lines in the post #6, but this is apparently not an isolated case of cruisers passing close to the shore, for showing off.

    There are 70 people missing and are feared trapped inside the ship. The impact has occurred around 20:00 . There was a blackout aboard after the hit and the compartment watertight doors have allegedly closed when the seawater started to rush in, so it could be that these persons might have been in the lower cabins and couldn't find the way out.
     
  2. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    Wow. You guys are having a tough go of it over there with the credit downgrades and this cruise ship disaster all in one day. At least most people seem to have been rescued from the boat (from the news that makes it to the States).

    Tough weekend.

    What a huge navigation blunder though, even if they were "buzzing" close to the island for fun. I guess if there is a shoal or something, they seem to have found it.
     
  3. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    Yikes! Hope they find them. How cold is it there? Water temperature?
     
  4. daiquiri
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    daiquiri Engineering and Design

    The seawater temperature is around 15 °C in this period of the year.
     
  5. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    The last major Mediterranean ship disaster was the Don Pedro.

    Was there a football game on last night ?

    Goaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal !! is a major distraction .

    What is the Italian authority charged with investigating maritime accidents ?
     
  6. peter radclyffe
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    peter radclyffe Senior Member

  7. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    There was some professionalism on the bridge that night.

    Look at the mast. Correct navigation lights lit!

    [​IMG]
     
  8. michael pierzga
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    michael pierzga Senior Member

    Red over red...the captain is dead !
     
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  9. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    Wow, I wouldn't even take a small sailboat through that split in the rocks they went through. Was someone navigating by sight and ignoring GPS input? I can't imagine any other reason for this course. Maybe sighting some channel markers and thinking they were some deep water markers? I see there are some channel markers they may have been leaving to port, visually. This will be a very interesting investigation.

    [​IMG]
     
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  10. DCockey
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    DCockey Senior Member

    If s "top Costa executive" was corrected quoted, then he wasn't following the usual rules about what to say and not say when a disaster happens:
    A top Costa executive, Gianni Onorato, said Saturday that the Concordia's captain had the liner on its regular, weekly route when it struck a reef. "The ship was doing what it does 52 times a year, going along the route between Civitavecchia and Savona," said Mr. Onorato, who is Costa's director general. The captain is an 11-year Costa veteran, he said. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/14/costa-concordia-disaster-_n_1206167.html

    Interesting speculation about the cause of the accident is being reported. Being an editor doesn't necessarially make one a technical expert.
    The explosion heard by many of the passengers on the Italian cruise ship, the Costa Concordia, may have been caused by a phenomenon known as “harmonic interference”, according to Malcolm Latarche, the editor of the global shipping magazine IHS Fairplay Solutions.

    Mr Latarche said that the ship was powered by a bank of six diesel-electric engines which effectively worked as an onboard power station designed to supply electricity to all parts of the vessel.

    But like power stations on land, the engines are prone to electrical surges and troughs caused by “harmonic interference”.

    Mr Latarche added: “From the reports I have seen it seems there was an explosion followed by a blackout, which could have been caused by a power surge. There are various back-up systems in place on all ships but they may have failed also."
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...ster-what-could-have-caused-the-accident.html

    What shouldn't be forgotten is the lives lost.
     
  11. peter radclyffe
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    peter radclyffe Senior Member

  12. liki
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    liki Senior Member

  13. daiquiri
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    daiquiri Engineering and Design

    Catbuilder, I believe that the map you have shown is giving an incorrect reconstruction of the events. The ship couldn't have been travelling along a straight course at the moment of the impact, as I will show in a few moments. And passing in between those rocks with such a huge ship would be on the limit of science fiction, imho.

    But first, few additional news:

    The captain is currently under arrest, for negligence, abandoning the ship before the evacuation of the passengers was completed and because the investigators fear that he could try to go on the run.
    He insistently claims that rocks which the ship has impacted were not shown on the maps and that he was unaware of them.
    He also claims that the ship was navigating at 300 m distance from the shore at the moment of the impact.
    The investigation has allegedly shown that he was present at the command bridge at the moment of accident, and that the route followed by the ship was voluntarily chosen, so it was commanded by him.

    Now, look at this photo:

    [​IMG]

    The draft of Costa Concordia is 7.8 meters. The picture shows that the initial impact with the rock has started nearly at the turn of the bilge, at some 6-7 meters of depth. During the first 15-20 meters it has just scraped the and deformed the plating. The biggest damage and the rupture of the hull was caused after this initial phase, by a massive rock which was placed at around mid-draft of the ship - hence at a depth of around 4-5 meters. The rock has teared a huge part of plating and framing, until it dug deep enough into the hull to be strapped and carried away. It is still visible in the photo, a giant rock embedded in the hull side.

    Now, it is interesting to note one imho important thing: the stabilizer in front of the area of impact is intact. What it might tell us is that the ship was performing a very tight turn before the impact, possibly with a heavy use of thrusters, so it has touched the ground with a sideways velocity component.

    If that is true, then the captain might have not say the truth to the investigators, because such a tight turn is imo not an ordinary practice for a cruiser ship, and could be compatible only with an emergency maneuver. Ergo, he has realized at some point that the course was wrong and they were entering the shallow zone, but it was too late.

    The Giglio island is one of the most visited and explored touristic summer spots, by sailors, by scuba-divers, and by fishermen. It is highly improbable that a rock of that size and so close to the surface would remain unnoticed and uncharted.

    The combination of the AIS path record, the defensive-offensive testimony from the captain and the precision of Google Earth satellite pics can be combined to reconstruct the ship's position at the moment of impact. Take a look here:

    Concordia 3.jpg

    It is the same rock visible in all the other chart pictures shown in this thread, also in those posted by CatBuilder. Just the point where the impact has happened is different - on the outer border of the rocky zone. That's the only rock around which has the characteristics compatible with the damage visible in the photo. And is also the only rock near the surface visible in the satellite photographs. It also lays exactly at the presumed point of impact indicated in my post #8, which might be an indication that the path reconstructed back there could be pretty correct.

    The pieces of the puzzle fit pretty well to me now, unless some surprising new findings come out from the official investigation. It imho shows that this accident is a consequence of a pure negligence, a human error caused by either an excessive confidence or a bad evaluation of the ship dynamics during a turn. We will know the truth pretty soon, given the media exposure of this investigation.
     
  14. peter radclyffe
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    peter radclyffe Senior Member


  15. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    That sounds about right to me, Daiquiri.

    The chart I had posted was from an earlier article linked to in this thread.

    Why is there such a gap in the AIS data at just the moment we need to see where the ship was grounded? Power failure?
     
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