Removal of Costa Concordia Slated to Take Up to 10 Months
The Costa Concordia disaster which happened more than two weeks ago continues to plague officials and the end is still far from sight. Adverse weather conditions off the Tuscan coast have systematically halted recovery operations that were under way to begin unloading 500,000 gallons of fuel from the shipwrecked vessel. Now, it is expected to take up to 10 months before the aftermath of the wreck is completely removed.
Since the Italian cruise liner capsized on January 13, 2012 rescuers have been tirelessly working to find the remaining 16 missing persons of the ship's 4,200 passengers. However, divers were deterred when it was discovered that the ship had shifted significantly in the short time span of only six hours – a discovery that suspended rescuers from continuing their search until the waves and weather were better conditioned to resume the search. As of Saturday, January 28th one more body has been identified (Peruvian crew member E.S. Molina), raising the death toll to 17. One body which was recovered from the ship has still not been identified.
When suspension is lifted and recovery operations resume, it will take at least 28 days to remove the fuel from 15 on-board tanks which account for more than 80% of the ship's total fuel load. Removal of the ship cannot begin until the fuel itself has been removed. Bids for operation of the recovery project could take up to two months, and the actual removal could take anywhere from seven to ten months. National civil protection officials have reported that the "single, big goal…is that this does not translate into an environmental disaster."
It is safe to assume that the primary goal of protection officials is in line with the concerns of local residents, maritime workers, and the like. Already, insurance costs for the accident are tallied at near $1 billion, a total which accounts for both environmental damages and injuries. The effects of this disaster will be felt by many, and apparently, for many months to come.
For any type of offshore accident and injury, whether directly related to maritime law or indirectly affected by it, an offshore injury attorney at Arnold & Itkin LLP is available for legal assistance. In only a few short years we have successfully handled some of the biggest cases in offshore law, winning hundreds of millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for our clients. Accidents such as the Costa Concordia disaster are ones large enough to adversely affect the lives of many – passengers, family members, harbor workers, environmentalists, tourism businesses, etc. Therefore, these accidents cannot go unrecognized within the legal system, and we are here to represent those whose lives have been negatively altered because of them.
Contact an offshore injury lawyer from our firm today to learn more.