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The Story
The Story was produced at North Carolina Public Radio - WUNC and was heard on over 100 stations.Visit The Story web site to listen to this program and for more details, archives, show highlights and more podcasts. UPDATE 1.13.2020: The Story web site has been decommissioned and is in the process of being archived. It may return at a later date.

As Costa Concordia Sank, Newlyweds Allowed Others To Take Life Boats First

Photo: Benji Smith and Emily Lau were honeymooning aboard the Costa Concordia cruise ship before it hit a rock and sank.
Benji Smith
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It was a Sunday night early last January, and Benji Smith and Emily Lau were celebrating their honeymoon aboard the Costa Concordia cruise ship.

They were traveling near Tuscany when it happened: The ship scraped a rock that tore through its hull, flooding its engine room, and sending the ship tilting onto its side. More than 4,000 people were on board.

In this interview, Benji and Emily tell host Dick Gordon about the noise they heard from their cabin, and how they and hundreds of other vacationers were initially told the ship was only experiencing an electrical problem.

By the time they were lowered into a life raft, it was too late – the ship was at an angle, and the life raft could not safely reach the water.

Hear the full conversation at The Story's website. Also in this show: Todd Busch, who is overseeing the removal of the Costa Concordia, explains how the vessel is expected to be towed away by December this year; and illustrator Matt Kish on why he made a work of art for each page of the classic Moby-Dick.

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