In a pre-trial hearing that will decide whether or not Captain Francesco Schettino will face trial over the January sinking of the Costa Concordia, prosectors argue that only “the hand of God” steered the stricken ship back to Giglio, not Schettino.

“It was the hand of God that drew the Costa Concordia towards Giglio island after the collision with the rocks at Giglio, not Capt Schettino’s manoeuvre,” said prosecutor Francesco Verusio.

Schettino, who is accused of causing a shipwreck and abandoning ship, maintains that his actions following the initial grounding of the Costa Concordia on the rocks of Giglio following a risky “saluting” maneuver saved many lives.

Prosecutors, and really the public at large, think different. Prosecutors contend that if not for momentum and a prevailing wind the ship would have sank fast in deeper water with all 4,200 people on board.

“If there was no wind that night, the ship would have capsized and sunk in a minute,” Verusio said in the hearing.

Captain Schettino and eight others are under investigation in connection to the January 13th sinking, including three shoreside executives from Costa Crociere, the ship’s operator.

The pre-trial hearing, now in its final phase, will decided whether Captain Schettino will face criminal charges that could include multiple counts of manslaughter, abandoning ship, and failing to communicate with maritime authorities.

Last week, Schettino sued Costa Crociere over his firing, and has demanded he get his job back WITH back pay. Where was that nerve on January 13th?


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  • Kevin Sorbello

    While I agree it was the wind and waves that pushed the ship back to shore, it was also the wind and waves that caused the set and drift that put them on the rocks. By that logic, if it was the “hand of God” that saved them, it was the same hand that put them on the rocks. The bottom line is that Schettino cut it too close, his navigator put them even closer, the ship made the turn too late, and nothing they did after the accident other than lower the lifeboats had any effect on getting people safely ashore. Would the ship have sank “in a minute” had it not been pushed ashore? I seriously doubt it. It might have eventually sunk, but without the pivot point created by the shore it would have stayed upright long enough to launch all the boats and people would have had a relatively level platform from which to evacuate. There is hyperbole on both sides of this equation.

    • Hubert

      I agree with this comment

  • Catspaw

    Based on the overview below and reports Concordia lost power and propulsion after the collision, clearly the wind then push her back to Isola del Giglio.

    By that time Captain Schettino and others had abandoned Concordia, the crew and passengers to whatever fate held for them. God isn’t being questioned here.

    That Schettino is suing Costa Crociere over his firing demanding his job back and back pay seems an obvious legal maneuver to mitigate his guilt.

    That Schettino immediately took to a lifeboat with other crew seems proof enough that he did not intend to answer for his actions and hoped the evidence would end up at the bottom of the Tyrrhenian Sea.

    Let us see how he answers for the death of so many innocent passengers. In days of yore and honor, this kind of man would commit suicide and end a pointless legal proceeding.

    That Captain Schettino has no such intention only makes him more detestable. Costa then should bear a grave penalty at the Directors level.


  • Catspaw

    Further considerations . . .

    “court-appointed experts delivered a 270-page report of what went wrong that night based on an analysis of data recorders, ship communications equipment, testimony and other evidence.”

    “The timeline in the experts’ report, however, makes clear that he had assumed command six minutes before the ship struck the reef.”

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