Costa Cruises parent company Carnival is said to have blamed passengers, at least in part, for the damages they sustained in the Costa Concordia shipwreck a year ago in documents pertaining to a law suit in the United States, according to the passengers' lawyers. The disaster off Tuscany's Giglio Island on January 13, 2011 claimed the lives of 32 people The John Arthur Eaves law firm, which is representing the passengers, said the Miami-based Carnival Corp wrote in court documents that "passengers' negligent or careless behavior were among the causes, if not the only cause, of the alleged injuries and damages".
Passengers, relatives and crew members of the Costa Concordia have filed a class-action suit against Carnival in California, where hearings begin on July 23. "Carnival denies it has any duty to protect passengers from damages while they are on board. We will ask the court to interview all safety and training personnel, and everyone who was in charge of emergency equipment and evacuation," said John Arthur Eaves Jr. "We will also ask for testimony from everyone responsible for what happened at Giglio, and who allowed the captain to deviate from his route".
The ship, with 4,252 people from all over the world on board, was on the first leg of a cruise around the Mediterranean when it hit a reef during an unofficial near-shore salute to the local islanders. Captain Francesco Schettino deviated from the ship's computer-programmed route to perform this manoeuvre.