The Cost of Concordia
This feature is a satirical and journalistic review of what happened on the Costa Concordia, a cruise ship that partially sank in 2012. We get an interesting portrayal of the employment, communication, and procedural mistakes made by the crew that led to the ship hitting a rock in the Tyrrhenian Sea off the eastern shore of Isola del Giglio, Italy. The damage that ensued claimed the lives of several passengers and crew on board.
The narrator tracks the interactions onboard that led to the ship being off course in the first place and the efforts made to correct the course once they realized the mistake. Initially, it really isn't much at all since they do not even inform the passengers of the extent of the damages and the danger they were in. In the meantime, passengers realize something is amiss and they contact their family members who contact the harbormaster.
The harbormaster and coast guards frequently try to offer help, but the captain remains in denial for a long time, effectively delaying the efforts that would have helped the passengers. As the events unfold, it becomes clear that the persons in charge of the ship were a lot more concerned with their own safety. The passengers have to act on their own initiative to ensure they get to abandon the ship with assistance from the rescue team.
In the aftermath, only a minimal amount of compensation is given to the passengers by the company that owns the cruise liner, but the individual crew members who were in charge also had to face their own judgment in court. Several troubling details are also revealed about one couple who slept through the entire ordeal and also a female passenger who was apparently a source of distraction for the captain. The captain who abandoned the ship was finally convicted on manslaughter charges after several appeals to his case. The ship took several years to be put upright. It also took another couple of years to be dismantled.
The satirical take on the events adds some level of humor, but it does not diminish the attention given to portraying each detail. It does evoke some interesting thoughts about leadership and responsibility in times of crisis.