Cruise ship runs aground in Italy; at least six dead

A luxury cruise ship with 4,200 people aboard ran aground on the Tuscan island of Giglio, off the coast of Italy, on Friday, according to reports. At least six people are said to have been killed, with some reports indicating that eight may have died.

The Italian coast guard confirmed that at least three bodies have been recovered from the sea, and several are feared dead with an unspecified number of passengers still missing.

The AFP reports that passengers jumped overboard in panic after the Costa Concordia began to tilt after striking a coral reef near Isola del Giglio. It isn’t immediately known whether all of the dead are passengers or crew members.

‘We were having dinner when all of a sudden the lights went out. It seemed as if the ship struck something and then we heard a loud bang and everything fell to the floor,” a passenger told Sky News.

”The captain immediately came on the tannoy and said that there had been an electrical fault but it seemed very strange as the ship almost immediately began to list to one side. The glasses just slid off the table.”

The cruise ship reportedly left the port of Savona at 7.pm., and was on its way to its first port call in Civitavecchia when it ran aground at 9 p.m. local time on Friday night.

[Image credit: Peter Honvehlmann/EPA]