Sub to Probe Sunken Ship

Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Greek rescuers will deploy a robot submarine to search for the bodies of two French tourists believed to have drowned when a cruise ship sank off a resort island in the Aegean Sea last week, reported the Houston Chronicle. The ship's captain blamed the accident on sea currents that swept the Sea Diamond onto a charted reef off the island of Santorini, tearing a hole in the ship's hull.

According to reports, more than 50 tons of the ship's fuel leaked after the sinking, some of which has washed ashore. An oceanographic vessel is expected to arrive on the island to deploy the unmanned sub in an attempt to locate the missing passengers and the ship's voyage data recorder, the Merchant Marine Ministry said. Most of the hull is 320 feet below the water's surface inside a sea-filled crater caused by a volcanic eruption 3,500 years ago. But officials fear the ship's position is not yet stable.

The rest of the passengers reached safety after scrambling onto lifeboats, crossing narrow gangways and climbing down rope ladders. The Sea Diamond sunk some 15 hours later, causing an oil slick that experts tried to contain Monday. Plans were also made to seal off or remove the remaining 400 tons from the wreckage. Source: Houston Chronicle

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