From his recollection, around 50 minutes after the crash, which occurred at 9:42pm the lifeboats started being lowered and the abandon ship signal was given by Captain Bosio who was not working on the Costa Concordia but had boarded the ship to get to his home town of Savona, near Genoa. He is the captain of one of the Concordia’s sister ships, the Serena.
Captain Bosio is understood to have coordinated the entire rescue effort, working alongside crewmembers throughout the night, helping women and children into lifeboats.
American captain and nautical analyst John Konrad tells Vanity Fair special correspondent Bryan Burrough that the ship had already been listing starboard, toward the peninsula. When Schettino dropped the ship’s anchors in an attempt to prevent it from falling farther, he instead created the opposite effect. “You can see they let out too much chain,” Konrad says. “I don’t know the precise depths, but if it was 90 meters, they let out 120 meters of chain. So the anchors never caught. The ship then went in sideways, almost tripping over itself, which is why it listed. If he had dropped the anchors properly, the ship wouldn’t have listed so badly.” How to explain so fundamental a blunder?
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