A TIPPERARY couple who thought they were going to die when the cruiseliner they were holidaying on began to sink off the coast of Italy, have told the Tipperary Star their last thoughts were for each other and their children.
Clonmel man Seamus Moore said that the 5-hour ordeal he and his wife Carol underwent off the coast of Italy on board the sinking Costa Concordia has given him a new perspective on life.
Relief has become tempered by anger however, at the way the Captain of the vessel reacted to the listing of the 114,500-tonne vessel after it struck land near the island of Giglio on Friday evening. Seamus also told the Tipperary Star that panic erupted among the Italian speaking passengers during the crisis: while the English speaking passengers had been briefed on what to do in an emergency, the Italians were not told what to do prior to boarding the vessel.
Seamus, a HSE worker who moved to Tipperary in 1980, is married to Carol, who lived for a time in Nenagh. “We thought we were at sea, we shouldn’t have been anywhere near land. My first reaction was ‘we must have hit a freak wave,’ because it knocked all the power out.” Seamus was on Deck Three when the ship struck, while Carol was in the Duty Free on Deck Five. The couple followed instructions by immediately making their way back to their cabin on Deck Six, where they had the presence of mind to collect their passports. Carol even remembered to change out of her high heels and into runners. Seamus says the ship “see sawed once and then settled again.”
Read more on this dramatic story in this week’s Tipperary Star