Breaking News - Italy Cruise Captain To Bosses: 'I Messed Up'
The cruise captain accused of abandoning ship when the Costa Concordia struck rocks, causing the deaths of 11 people, called his bosses and told them: 'I messed up', it has emerged.
Capt Francesco Schettino, who was jailed after he left the ship, made the frantic call 23 minutes after he had struck rocks and torn a fatal 70m hole in the hull which lead to the deaths of 11 people, with 21 still missing.
He is currently is under house arrest near Naples, facing charges of manslaughter and abandoning ship after he allegedly left the liner before hundreds of passengers. Schettino has claimed he tripped and fell into a lifeboat.
In judicial documents which form part of the probe against him, Schettino confirmed that just half an hour before last week's tragedy, he had dined in the ship's exclusive Club restaurant along with Moldovan blonde cruise ship rep Domnica Cermortan, 25.
At the time of the impact last Friday at 21.42, Schettino said that Domnica was ''in a side room'' close to the bridge.
He said:''All of a sudden I saw foam on the surface of the water off the bow of the ship. I knew immediately it was a reef that had not shown up on the radar.''
The ship was travelling at 16 knots. Schettino ordered the wheel to be turned ''full to the right'' and called for the engines to be thrown in ''full reverse'', but it was too late.
Schettino told investigating judge Valeria Montesarchio how after he had crashed into the rocks - known as Le Scole - he had sent two senior officers down to the engine room.
They reported that it was flooded and water was pouring in.
As terrified passengers began asking what had happened after the ship plunged briefly into darkness, Schettino called Costa Cruises operations manager Roberto Ferrarini in Genoa and told him: ''I messed up. We have touched the bottom (of the sea).
"I am telling you the truth. We sailed past Giglio and we took a hit.''
The revelations came as divers resumed their search for the 21 people still missing on board the ship.
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