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Old January 28th, 2012, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by HawkeyeFLA View Post
1) Feasable, but some reports have said that the impact happened mere minutes after the course deviation.

2) Could be interesting. Might be something to look at.

3) Davits can only extend so far. Not really sure where they could go with this one, but I am sure designers will be looking at it.

4) Now this one makes some sense. RFID is wonderful technology that could be utilized in a situation like this. With a caveat. There has to be a way to know that there is a person in the life vest before the chip starts transmitting. Otherwise divers would be finding every life vest on the ship. I am sure some kind of activation circuit based on the buckle would work. As for oxygen ... first it wouldn't be just O2. It would be a fairly standard mix of our breathable air. A basic "pony tank" could possibly give upwards of 30m of breathable air in an unpaniced person. Reduced when there is panic of course. But could this be enough time to make it out safely? Hard to say, but still something to consider. *Lots* of effort will have to go into inspection and maintaining of these pony tanks tho.

5) Seriously? And where do you propose to make this "room" inside of a 185 square foot cabin?

6) Doesn't matter how interesting it is, people that are going to ignore it will still ignore it. Happens on airplanes all the time, even airlines like Southwest that try and make it more entertaining.

Will things change because of this? Certainly. I can imagine that SOLAS standards might change to state that lifeboat drills must be conducted before the ship leaves port. There has been a lot of confusion on this one with some media outlets reporting that USCG requires this to occur before sailing. I sailed Costa (On the Atlantica) in 2009 out of Fort Lauderdale. Our lifeboat drill happened the second day. I was with a group of seasoned cruiser travel agents and they all commented on how odd it was, but still within SOLAS requirements of 24 hours.

What makes things more difficult with a sailing like the Concordia is that it would seem that she was embarking and disembarking passengers at numerous ports as she sailed around Europe. No true beginning and end like we are accustomed to here in the US (I'm guessing Passenger Service act as a reasoning for this).
Not sure how much safer you can make cruise ships. Let's not forget that this accident was caused by a bonehead.

Cruise ships are designed today to stay afloat at least as long as it is required to evacuate. If the captain would have simply stopped and called for an evacuation everybody would have come off the ship safely. He even had the time to evaluate first.
But in a boneheaded move he stirred the ship back out to see before making bonehead move #4 (#1 hitting rock; #2 not stopping and evaluating or calling for an evacuation; #3 moving back out to sea) doing an anchor drop turn. Ship turns around its port side (only starboard anchor was dropped) and the water gushes in pushing the weight port side and the tilt began.
Bonehead move #5 was moving the ship sideways (starboard side first) into shallow water which completed the flip.

I doubt that there are any safety measures protecting against a captain with so many and so many crucial errors in judgement.

The buoyancy of cruise ships even with a total compartment hull failure are of utmost importance. We all are cruisers and we all remember sailing during high winds and high waves and we all felt how cruise ships uprighted themselves. They are tested on tilting and most cruise ships can recover from 15 degree (which is substantial) tilts with ease. Even with the loss of one or two compartments a cruise ship nowadays will survive with almost no tilt.

here is a copy of one of the life boat requirements:
Rescue boat davits are destined for following actions:

  • defection of the boat with permissible number of persons from stowage position outside ship tilt to 20 on arbitrary ship side and trim to 10.
  • hoisting of the boat with 10 persons crew from the water to stowage position, when the ship has no tilt and no trim.
Just my thoughts.
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