Costa Concordia Ship Will Be Removed In June

The Costa Concordia ship will be removed from a Tuscany, Italy, reef in June. The ship has been stuck off the cost of Isola del Giglio for nearly two years. The wreckage remains a grim reminder of a disaster that injured 64 and killed 32.

On January 13, 2012, the ship was on the first leg of a tour around the Mediterranean Sea. At some point during the cruise, Captain Francesco Schettino made the decision to deviate from the ship’s planned course. Schettino wanted to approach Isola del Giglio and salute a former colleague who retired on the island.

As Costa Concordia approached the shore, it became lodged on a coral reef. The reef eventually tore a hole in the side of the ship and it began to fill with water. Although the captain tried to correct the error, it was far too late.

Authorities spent hours evacuating the ship. However, 32 people lost their lives in the disaster. Following the rescue operation, Captain Schettino was arrested and criminally charged with abandoning ship, causing a disaster, and manslaughter.

Officials determined that the ship was a total loss. Throughout the last two years, workers were tasked with removing debris, draining the ship’s fuel, and rotating the ship to an upright position. ABC News reports the cost of salvage is expected to exceed $800 million.

In a recent announcement, Costa Crociere officials, along with Italy’s civil protection chief, said the ship will be moved in June. Prior to the removal, the ship will need to be refloated. When the ship is mobile, it will be transported elsewhere to be broken down into scrap.

CBC reports several ports in Britain, China, France, Italy, and Turkey have bid on the project. Environment Minister Andrea Orlando said Costa Crociere officials would prefer a port in Italy, as it would reduce the environmental and monetary cost.

Officials are expected to announce the Costa Concordia’s final destination in March.