Diver working on Costa Concordia dies in accident

Diver working on Costa Concordia dies in accident

A diver is reported to have died while working on the shipwrecked Costa Concordia after apparently gashing his leg on an underwater metal sheet.

Italy’s civil protection agency, which is leading the removal of the Concordia from the Tuscan coast, said the diver was Spanish.

Tuscany’s La Nazione newspaper said the diver had been working on preparations to attach huge tanks on to sides of the Concordia, to float the ship off its false seabed and tow it to a port for eventual dismantling.

The newspaper reported he gashed his leg on an underwater metal sheet and was then unable to get free.

It said he bled heavily before a diver colleague was able to bring him to the surface. He was reportedly conscious upon surfacing but later died, according to Sky News.

He is the first diver to die in the line of work on salvaging the Concordia ever since it hit a reef off the island of Giglio in January 2012, killing 32 passengers and crew.

The Concordia was righted in preparation for removal during a 19-hour engineering feat last autumn, in which a system of pulleys wrenched 115,000-ton cruise ship from its side to vertical.

How clean are the pools on your cruise ship?

Enjoying a dip in the pool is a great way to spend the time at sea on any cruise, but have you ever stopped to think how clean the pools really are, especially if there are lots of young ones using them?

That was the question raised by cruise director Sally MacMillan in the Sydney Morning Herald, who pointed out that pools on cruise ships are generally quite small (because of the space and weight they take up), and are often very busy.

These two factors can conspire to limit the amount of enjoyment to be had at the pool, with a ten-day family cruise typically being incomplete unless the pools are closed several times for cleaning after a child has had an accident.

This can be incredibly annoying for those wishing to use the pool, especially if you’re holidaying without children of your own. But then that’s what adult-only cruises are for. And it’s better to be inconvenienced for a short while in order to be able to enjoy clean facilities.

That being said, Ms MacMillan takes the opportunity to remind parents of the rules that do exist on most cruise ships, even if they are often ignored.

“Let’s be clear here – if your child is not toilet trained, whether or not he or she is wearing ‘swim nappies’, whether he or she is 10 months or 10 years old, they are not allowed in the pool,” she says. “Any pool on the ship.”

Indeed, with the recent debate over the safety of pools on cruise ships for young children following the drowning of a six-year-old aboard the Carnival Victory earlier this year, parents would be well advised to consider alternative activities if their children aren’t ready for the pool.

Disney adds lifeguards to its cruises

Disney adds lifeguards to its cruises

Disney Cruise Line has reportedly become the first major cruise line to install lifeguards on all of its ships.

Although no official announcement has been made, passengers on board the Disney Dream and Disney Magic have seen lifeguards stationed by family pools since late September, according to Cruise Critic.

Disney Fantasy and Disney Wonder are expected to follow suit with the new policy within the next couple of weeks.

Lifeguards will be on duty at all times the pools are open, which is generally all hours of the day, apart from night-time and if there’s bad weather. Disney stated that it regularly looks at its policies on these and all issues and is always willing to make changes where necessary.

Currently, most cruise lines do not provide life guards for their pools. However, the issue has been cast into the media spotlight in the last few weeks following the drowning of a young boy onboard a ship operated by Carnival.

The tragic event occurred onboard the Carnival Victory while it was at sea and en-route to Port Miami in the US. At the time, Carnival told the Associated Press: “To the best of our knowledge it is the first time a child has drowned aboard one of our ship.

“Carnival extends its heartfelt sympathy to the family during this very difficult time. The company’s CareTeam is providing assistance and support.”

Although such cases are rare, it did prompt many to suggest that cruise lines and hotels have an obligation to ensure that youngsters in their pools are safe. On the other hand, some remain adamant that the responsibility for watching children while they are on a cruise ship remains with parents.

According to Carol Finkelhoffe, chair of the Cruise Line & Passenger Ship Committee in the US, all cruise lines should be providing lifeguards for family pools. She said earlier this month: “Someone should be watching the pool. It’s foreseeable that these types of accidents can happen … and they should do something to prevent them.”