Just two months after the Italian flagged Costa Concordia cruise ship struck rocks near the Italian island of Giglio, another Italian vessel has run aground off the coast of Sicily.
The 500 foot Gelso M ran aground in high winds and rough seas this morning, near the port town of Syracuse. The captain of the tanker called for assistance from the Italian Coast Guard which safely rescued 19 crewmembers from the stricken vessel notwithstanding high winds.
Reports are that the vessel was taking on water, although the tanker was not carrying any cargo at the time.
There is already criticism in the international press that the captain had sailed the vessel too close to the shore given the weather conditions. Fortunately, due to the skill of the Italian Coast Guard, this grounding has a happier ending than the Concordia disaster.
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