Latest statement from Carnival Corp.
Carnival Corporation & plc Announces Comprehensive Audit and Review of Safety and Emergency Response Across All Its Cruise Lines (received 5:32 p.m.)
MIAMI – January 19, 2012 – Following the tragic Costa Concordia accident, Carnival Corporation & plc, parent company of Costa Cruises and nine leading cruise lines around the world, today announced a comprehensive audit and review of all safety and emergency response procedures across all of the company’s cruise lines.
Carnival Corporation & plc and the cruise industry as a whole have maintained an excellent safety record over the years. “However, this tragedy has called into question our company’s safety and emergency response procedures and practices,” said Micky Arison, chairman and CEO of Carnival Corporation & plc. “While I have every confidence in the safety of our vessels and the professionalism of our crews, this review will evaluate all practices and procedures to make sure that this kind of accident doesn’t happen again.”
The review is being led by Captain James Hunn, a retired U.S. Navy Captain and currently the company’s senior vice president of Maritime Policy & Compliance. Following a 32-year career in the Navy, Hunn has held senior positions at Carnival Corporation & plc for nearly a decade, focusing on corporate-wide efforts to establish maritime policy standards, while overseeing the company’s health, environmental, safety, and security practices.
Hunn and senior health and safety executives from each of the lines will review all safety and emergency response policies and procedures, officer and crew training and evaluation, bridge management and company-wide response and support efforts. Hunn will report to the Health, Environment, Safety & Security Committee of the Board, and to Howard Frank, vice chairman and chief operations officer of Carnival Corporation & plc.
In addition, the Health, Environment, Safety & Security Committee is engaging outside industry-leading experts in the fields of emergency response organization, training and implementation to conduct an audit of all of the company’s emergency response and safety procedures and to conduct a thorough review of the Costa Concordia accident.
Frank said, “This company-wide initiative will identify lessons learned and best practices to further ensure the security and safety of all of our passengers and crew.”
Updated 5:20 p.m.
The Palm Beach Post is reporting the mystery woman, now identifed as Dominica Cermotan, is defending Capt. Schettino’s actions, claiming he saved more than 3,000 lives.
Cermotan – a translator fluent in several languages - had previously worked for Costa, but was not on duty when she boarded Concordia in Rome prior to the accident.
Read more from the Palm Beach Post report here.
In another Concordia related report on the Post, seafarers decry Schettino’s decision to abandon ship, some saying he should have stayed onboard until all passengers were accounted for.
Read more about what other ship captains are saying here.
EARLIER POSTS BELOW
Fox News is reporting Thursday that the captain of the ill-fated Costa Concordia Francesco Schettino had supposedly dined with a mystery woman shortly before the deadly collision.
The 25-year-old may have been aboard illegally and is expected to be called as a witness by authorities, according to the report.
Eleven people so far are confirmed dead and another 21 still missing after the Costa Cruises ship hit submerged rocks off the coast of Italy Jan. 13 and capsized.
Read more from FoxNews here.
GLOBAL CRUISE LEADERS PRESS CONFERENCE
In related news, cruise industry and passenger shipping giants gathered in London Thursday for a press conference to call on the International Maritime Organization to do a complete review of the findings of the Concordia tragedy.
Read the statement below:
19 JANUARY 2012, London
Christine Duffy, President and CEO of the Cruise Lines International Association, speaking on behalf of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), European Cruise Council (ECC) and Passenger Shipping Association (PSA) today called on the International Maritime Organization to undertake what she termed: “a comprehensive evaluation from the findings of the Costa Concordia investigation.”
Speaking at the Passenger Ship Safety Conference in London, Christine Duffy emphasized the importance of the evaluation to ensure that: “the cruise industry remains one of the safest recreational industries globally”.
She added: “the cruise industry is heavily regulated in compliance with the strict standards of the International Maritime Organization, the UN agency that mandates global standards.”
At the event, Ms Duffy expressed her condolences to those affected by the Costa Concordia tragedy: ‘I speak on behalf of the entire cruise line industry when I express my heartfelt condolences to all those affected. As we speak, teams of experts are working hard at the site while formal investigations by the Italian authorities are ongoing’.