It's been three months since Barbara and Gerald Heil left their home in White Bear Lake and set off on a cruise ship vacation along the picturesque shore of Italy. Today, a local Italian government said it had identified the couple's bodies, trapped in the shipwreck of the Costa Concordia January 13.
Citing safety concerns, Italian officials said they were calling off the search for those still missing at the site of the Costa Concordia shipwreck.
The AP reports:
"Italy's Civil Protection agency said Tuesday that technical studies indicated that the deformed hull of the ship created too many safety concerns to continue the search. It said in a statement that relatives and diplomatic officials representing the countries of the missing have been informed of the decision.
Costa Crociere SpA came to an agreement with several consumer groups and is offering 11,000 euros or $14,460 to each of the passengers of the cruise ship that ran aground off the Italian coast, earlier this month.
The Toronto Sun explains the money is for passengers who were uninjured and is to pay for "for items lost and any psychological damages." The cruise line will also refund the cost of the cruise and any travel costs that resulted from the crash.
Search and rescue operations at the wreck of the Costa Concordia have resumed, after being halted for a third time, due to choppy waters and the partially submerged vessel's tendency to shift on the rocks near Italy's coast.
What do you do with a 1,000-foot wreck that's full of fuel and half-submerged on a rocky ledge in the middle of an Italian marine sanctuary? Remove it. Very carefully.
The wreck of the cruise liner Costa Concordia, which ran aground last week, is not unlike a car accident. The first order of business is determining whether it's worth repairing or it gets junked. Then there are the questions of how best to go about it – and who pays.