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article imageCosta Concordia will be dismantled in Genoa; Piombino bid fails

By Marcus Hondro     Jun 4, 2014 in World
The Costa Concordia will be scrapped at the port of Genoa, Italian officials controlling the clean-up of the tragic cruise ship have announced. That leaves Piombino, near the island of Giglio where the ship hit a reef and listed over, losing out.
There were other ports, notably in China and Turkey, that bid for the contract but the port at Genoa is one of Europe's most modern; another factor in the decision may have been that Genoa is where Costa Cruises, owner of the ship, has its headquarters located. The port of Piombino in Tuscany, only 40 miles from Giglio, was rushing to modernize in an effort to get the contract, but to no avail.
Officials in charge of the operation said they hoped to begin towing the Costa Concordia to Genoa on July 20th. It will be dismantled and some of the ship will be recycled. The contract was reported to be worth 100 million Euros.
Titan Salvage, Micoperi refloat Costa Concordia
The saga of the Costa Concordia has been ongoing since Jan. 13th, 2012 when it sailed too close to the shores of Giglio, reportedly doing so at the orders of the captain, Francesco Schettino who, it is alleged, wanted to 'salute' a former colleague on the island. Sailing in uncharted waters just 300 metres from shore the 114,500 ton ship hit a reef, tearing a hole in its hull. The ship listed over with 65 percent of her underwater.
There were 4,229 passengers and crew onboard and 32 of them, including a five-year-old girl, died in the tragedy. Mr. Schettino is on trial in Grosetto, charged with manslaughter, causing a shipwreck and abandoning his ship; if found guilty he could get 20 years. Four other ship's officers and an official from the Costa Cruises emergency center were given plea bargains ranging from 20 to 32 months.
The companies Titan Salvage of America and Micoperi of Italy managed to right the ship by using a process called parbuckling, pulling it upright last September. Floatation devices are being attached as they now prepare it to be towed by the massive Dockwise Vanguard, a semi-submersible from the Netherlands that was built to transport offshore oil and gas facilities and large ships.
Residents of Giglio say they look forward, after 28 months, to having it removed.
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