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Rediff.com  » News » Costa Concordia completes final voyage to scrap yard

Costa Concordia completes final voyage to scrap yard

July 28, 2014 15:03 IST

Costa Concordia completes final voyage to scrap yard

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The wrecked Costa Concordia cruise ship limped into the Italian port of Genoa on Sunday to be scrapped two-and-a-half years after it capsized in a tragedy that claimed 32 lives.

The hulking vessel, about twice the size of the Titanic, was towed into the northern port after a four-day, 280 kilometre journey from the disaster site off the Tuscan island of Giglio.

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Image: Tug boats tow the Costa Concordia ship as they arrive outside Genoa's port, in northern Italy, where the ship will be broken up for scrap.
Photographs: Stefano Rellandini/Reuters

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Genoa was the port where the cruise ship was built and launched amid celebrations in January 2012.

Fears the damaged hull would break up under the strain, spilling toxic waste into Europe’s biggest marine sanctuary, proved unfounded, and dolphins joined the convoy of environmental experts in welcoming the ship into Genoa.

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Image: People watch the cruise liner Costa Concordia moving anticlockwise during the refloat operation maneuvers at Giglio Island.
Photographs: Alessandro Bianchi/Reuters

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Costa Concordia completes final voyage to scrap yard

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The maritime salvage operation to rescue the ship’s remains was one of the biggest ever and has been going on for the last two years. When it arrived at the port to the sound of ships’ horns blaring, Prime Minister Matteo Renzi remarked that the arrival will mark an end to the tragedy that claimed several people’s lives.

“This is not a runway show. It's the end of a story in which many people died, which none of us will ever forget,”Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said as he gazed up at the ship’s towering white flanks, tinged with rust, looming over the quayside.

“I have come to say thank you to those who have done something that everyone said was not possible,” he said.

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Image: People watch as the wrecked cruise ship Costa Concordia is towed by tugs from Giglio after being refloated.
Photographs: Laura Lezza/Getty Images

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Costa Concordia completes final voyage to scrap yard

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The Costa Concordia hit a reef off the Italian island of Giglio two years ago and capsized, killing 32 people. The remains of an Indian waiter, Russel Rebello, have not been found yet.

The remains of the 114,500-tonnes Concordia will not simply be thrown away: over 80 per cent of it is expected to be recycled or reused.

Between 40,000 and 50,000 tonnes of steel will be melted down and reused in the construction industry, while undamaged copper wiring, plumbing, plastics, machinery and furniture will recovered and sold on.

Personal belongings recovered on the lower decks will be returned to owners while items such as the ship’s piano -- which was being played as the ship hit the rocks -- may end up in a museum.

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Image: The Costa Concordia cruise liner is seen during its refloat operation at Giglio harbour, during one of maritime's largest salvage operations in history.
Photographs: Max Rossi/Reuters

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The overall salvage effort is expected to cost Carnival Corp, owner of the ship’s operator, Costa Cruises and its insurers more than $2.14 billion (Rs 128.58 crore).

Captain Schettino is currently being tried for multiple manslaughter, causing a shipwreck and abandoning his ship. A judgment in his trial is expected sometime next year.


Image: Dutch salvage workers celebrate after the refloat operation maneuvers that allowed cruise liner Costa Concordia to leave Giglio Island.
Photographs: Max Rossi/Reuters

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