An Awkward Award: Costa Concordia Crew Members Win "Seafarer of the Year"

Lloyd's List, the well respected shipping industry newspaper, issued its "Seafarer of the Year" award today. And to the surprise of many, the recipients were the crew members of the doomed Costa Concordia cruise ship. 

Lloyd's List explains that the media has painted the Costa crew with a broad brush as lacking competence, training, and experience. They allegedly added to the confusion surrounding the delayed evacuation of the cruise ship after captain Schettino steered the ship into the rocks off of Giglio.

I must admit that I have lumped them all together as well. 

Costa Concordia GiglioBut the initial reports of the four Italian experts investigating the disaster has also been critical of the crew members.  The experts have concluded that some crew members were unaware of the ship's emergency instructions and had difficulty communicating with each other. 

Lloyd's List's stated: "What was largely missed in the media storm that ensued were the genuine examples of bravery and professionalism displayed by members of the crew . . it should not be forgotten that without the skilled response of the majority of the crew, the loss of life could have been far higher."

Yes there were indeed many heroic stories which involved the crew members.  Many crew members lost their lives trying to help the passengers escape the nightmare. 

But the crew of a cruise ship is a team of individuals. Teams should not receive awards when some of the team members fail miserably in performing their professional duties.   

And there is the matter of the many dead passengers. Their surviving families, still grieving, may have a hard time wondering why anyone is receiving awards when the disaster killed their loved ones, some of whom remain trapped in the cold, dark hull in Giglio. 

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sandra - September 28, 2012 1:45 PM

As a surviver!!! of the costa concordia disaster.
I and my family which were also on board think that this award is adding insult to injury. We were told to go back to our cabins and await further instructions, this s only a technical problem etc etc etc!!! There was no coordination whatsoever. No one knew what to do !!!!

Laurie - September 28, 2012 6:20 PM

I am also a survivor of the Concordia and we were not told anything truthful by any crew member. When the signal was sounded that indicated to crew that the ship was taking on water (soon after the collision with the rock) we were told that it was a generator problem....we did not believe that! We felt the whole ship shudder as it hit the rocks and we made our own decision to go to the muster station and try to get off the ship! We were told to go to the fifth deck to get further instructions... we did not listen as we knew we had to get off the ship as soon as they would let us!! We didn't want to leave the mustering area and get trapped somewhere else on the ship. Our actions saved ourselves!! The group in front of our lifeboat (#7) insisted to the 3 crew manning it that we wanted to load and be lowered down... we convinced them and we were among the first half dozen lifeboats that reached the shore in Giglio.

enri - September 29, 2012 7:43 AM

what is the use of training on board & off-shore if in reality the people who are we depending which are in the highest position or what we called "training officers" are first one to get panicked and be lost in the real situation,its easy to make training but its quite impossible to apply in reality,so please get an training officers who really know their duties,obligation & most foremost their responsibility,don't give too much hard time & take more hours of ur crew in training for nothing.......

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