Julian Bray will be commenting live after the trial judge verdicts are given and how this will affect the future of cruise ship operation as they they become increasingly complex and technical. Also how this incident will affecxt the fdurture operation of SOLAS (Safety of Lives at Sea) introduced after the sinking of the Titanic over 100 years ago.
Schettino is charged with manslaughter, causing a shipwreck and leaving the liner ahead of some of the passengers when it hit rocks and capsized off the island of Giglio in 2012.
Defence lawyer Domenico Pepe asserted that his client was "the victim of a legal and media circus", who had suffered a lot of pain since the disaster. On Tuesday, prosecutor Stefano Pizza called the captain's conduct "reprehensible" and said: "There is a tsunami of evidence against Francesco Schettino but he has admitted to nothing. It would be easier for a lawyer to fly than to defend Schettino."
Schettino, 54, claims equipment failures complicated the situation on the sinking vessel, he held off calling the evacuation to avoid people panicking and jumping into the sea.
His lawyers suggested the captain had calculated tide and wind conditions would carry the listing ship closer to the shore, making the evacuation process safer. The reef was not on nautical charts and claimed sailing close to Giglio was encouraged by the ship's owner. Schettino,54, disputes claims he abandoned ship 30 plus minutes before the alarm was finally sounded, asserting that 'he fell off' as a result of the vessel tilting. Rescue Helicopters plucked survivors off the stranded 290-metre vessel while Schettino was already ashore.
A salvage operation estimated to cost many hundreds of millions of pounds, rolled and refloated the hulk and using buoyancy chambers towed the ship from Giglio in July 2014 for investigating and eventual breaking up.
Sources: CNS, BBC, SkyTV, PA, ENSA and RAI
JULIAN BRAY ++44(0)1733 345581, Journalist, Broadcaster, Aviation Security & Operations, Travel / Cruise Industry Expert, EQUITY, NUJ, Broadcast ISDN ++44 (0)1733 345020 (DUAL CODEC) SKYPE: JULIAN.BRAY.UK e&oe http://feeds.feedburner.com/BraysDuckhouseBlog