In 2012, passengers on the Carnival cruise liner "Costa Concordia" were met with unexpected tragedy. No, it wasn't the apocalypse that the Mayans had predicted, but instead a shipwreck that would leave 33 dead and another 64 injured. Early on in the first leg of their cruise, which departed from Italy, the Costa Concordia struck a large underwater rock formation. It smashed into the hull and caused the massive cruise ship to capsize in a matter of hours - the first one in history to do so. You may even remember seeing news reports about it on every major network, and for good reason. Cruise ships were thought to be safe and reliable ways to travel the ocean, with every inch of their route carefully plotted out ... so what happened?
The captain, Francesco Schettino, deviated from his course and got too close to the Isola del Giglio where it struck a large underwater rock. Prosecutors threatened to put him behind bars for as long as 26 years, but a lengthy trial ended up sentencing him to only 16 for his errors. Thankfully, the ecological impact wasn't anywhere near as bad as it could have been. Experts feared that the capsized ship would slip into deeper water and past the point of retrieval. There was also the troubling possibility of a large-scale oil leak. By March of that year, all of its fuel was safely extracted, and in 2014, after being righted, the Costa Concordia was towed back to its home port. Now, we have a chance to take a look inside the recently-recovered ship. Many have called it "one of the biggest maritime salvage operations," and when you see the scale of the damage, you'll understand why.
This is the Costa Concordia before it set sail on its fateful voyage.
Its wreck was covered by major news outlets around the world after it crashed into underwater rocks off the Isola del Giglio.
Here's what the Costa Concordia looks like today. After laying partially submerged for over a year, the ship's interior was transformed by the ocean.
This enormous theater would have provided entertainment for the cruise's guests. Now, it looks like it could have come straight out of the Titanic.
These large murals were either unsubmerged or simply unaffected by the water.
The insurance company declared the Costa Concordia a "constructive total loss."
The once-cozy cabins now look dark and eerie. The ship reportedly experienced a power outage when water filled the engine room shortly after the crash.
These slot machines are almost unrecognizable.
The crew in charge of dismantling the ship has been at work for years.
Photographers have had a surprisingly easy time gaining access to the ship and documenting its interior.
Many of the rooms were hardly used before the wreck occurred.
Years later, luggage can still be found in the ship's hallways. The world will not forget this tragic event anytime soon.
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H/T: Boredom Therapy