Pinoy passengers, crew survive Italian cruise ship disaster; Some survivors recall horrific scenes in Titanic

The Asian Journal reports that "the Philippine Embassy in Rome reported to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) that Ambassador Virgilio A. Reyes, Jr. dispatched a seven-man Embassy Emergency Response Team to evaluate the situation on the ground and to provide the necessary assistance to Filipino nationals and Filipino crew members of Costa Concordia, a cruise ship that ran aground off the coast of Grosetto, Tuscany, Italy last Friday evening, January 13."

According to the Reuters report written by Gavin Jones and Antonio Denti, the 114,500-ton Costa Concordia "dramatically keeled over off Italy’s coast." (Video by Euronews)

 

The Asian Journal reports that "the Philippine Embassy in Rome reported to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) that Ambassador Virgilio A. Reyes, Jr. dispatched a seven-man Embassy Emergency Response Team to evaluate the situation on the ground and to provide the necessary assistance to Filipino nationals and Filipino crew members of Costa Concordia, a cruise ship that ran aground off the coast of Grosetto, Tuscany, Italy last Friday evening, January 13."

 

The report noted: "The passengers and the Filipino crew members are temporarily housed at a church, in hotels and in schools at the port of Giglio Island. Many have already been transported to the mainland. At least three Filipino crew members were reported confined in a hospital, located in Grosseto, for injuries because they (fell from the ship’s decks)." The report likewise said that "Filipinos are generally safe." Reports say that there are no Filipino casualties, although "an official roll call and accounting of crew members is still being undertaken."

 

A Reuters report revealed that there were with 4,229 passengers on the Costa Concordia and that ship captain Francesco Schettino has been arrested on charges of manslaughter, causing a shipwreck and abandoning ship. According to Reuters, "around 64 people were injured in the accident." Rescue and relief operations are still underway.

 

In an Associated Press (AP) report (posted on CBSNews.com), one of the passengers, Valeria Ananias, a 31-year-old Los Angeles schoolteacher, "who crawled along nearly vertical hallways and stairwells in a desperate attempt to reach rescue boats" said, "Have you seen Titanic? That’s exactly what it was."

 

For more on this story, read the Asian JournalAP, and Reuters reports.

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