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Archive for Thursday, April 12, 2007

Cruise line blames sinking on human error

April 12, 2007

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— The operator of a cruise ship that struck a reef and sank off a popular Mediterranean resort, leaving two people missing, said Wednesday that human error was to blame.

The captain and five other crew members from the Sea Diamond already have been charged with negligence.

The ship struck well-marked rocks on April 5 and sank near Greece's Santorini island. Nearly 1,600 people, most of them Americans, were safely evacuated. An unmanned submarine is searching the sunken vessel for a missing French tourist and his daughter.

"The incident was a result of human error - but so are 75 percent of all accidents at sea," said Giorgos Koubenis, a representative of Cypriot-based Louis Cruise Lines. It was the company's first comment on the probable cause of the accident.

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