Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Costa #Concordia : Staff Members Were NOT Trained For A Distaster Claim Passengers!

Following Italy shipwreck disaster off Italy, owner Carnival braces for $90 million loss, Tuesday's stock market hit


Wake up and good morning. Miami-based Carnival Corp., owner of the Costa Concordia that struck a rock off the coast of Italy and began to sink, is still scrambling to explain this disaster and respond to claims of a breakdown in leadership during the crisis by the ship's crew. (Photo: AP, Gregorio Borgia)

On  Monday, Carnival shares lost a fifth of their value in London trading. Carnival's stock (CCL) will obviously be one to watch Tuesday when the markets reopen after the Martin Luther King Day holiday.
About 120 Americans were aboard. At least six people died and 29 are still missing. Here are three eyewitness accounts, eerily like the Titanic tales, from Floridians:

* "I felt like the disaster itself was manageable, but I felt like the crew was going to kill us," Benji Smith, a 1995 Dunedin High School graduate whose parents still live in Clearwater, told CNN. "It was every man for themself," added Emily Lau, Smith's wife. "No one knew how to help because they were never trained. That was the cruise line's fault." Read more in the Tampa Bay Times.

* "I thought that we would be dying. Right then," said 62-year-old Floridian Connie Barron, the Pembroke Pines resident who arrived in Miami on Monday on an Alitalia flight from Rome. As the luxury cruise ship tilted quickly to starboard off the coast of Italy, toiletries and glasses slid to the floor and Barron thought that this, her 10th cruise, would be her last. Read her story in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel and watch her interview in this video report at the Miami Herald.

* Homestead, Fla., residents Karen Camacho and her husband, Luis Hernandez, had just been served their soup in the dining room of the Costa Concordia when they heard a big noise on one side of the boat. They soon realized the ship was in trouble and headed to the lifeboats. "No one was giving directions or saying older people and kids should get in boats first," Camacho said. "Maybe some crew members did, but I didn't see it. Instead of letting passengers get into lifeboats, the crew were in first and saying not to let (passengers) in." Read more in USA Today.

Here's a compelling NBC Today Show interview with some survivors.
The cruise ship industry faces an uphill task to restore confidence among customers spooked by spectacular images of the stricken Costa Concordia flipped on its side and could suffer a major hit to sales in a key booking period.

Carnival, the Florida owner of the cruise ship that capsized off Italy's west coast, said it alone expected to take a hit of around $90 million from Friday's accident just as a result of the boat being out of use for the rest of the year. 

"The long-term consequences for the cruise industry could be significant. This accident could have a significant impact in terms of trading because we're in the peak-season for reservations," Natixis analyst Geoffrey d'Halluin told Reuters in this story.

-- Robert Trigaux, Business Columnist, Tampa Bay Times