A lawsuit filed in Florida state court last month by six passengers asking for $460 million in compensation from Costa Concordia parent company Carnival Cruise Lines, now has 39 plaintiffs and has been amended to include additional charges, including negligence. Each plaintiff seeks individual damages for their unique injuries and losses.
“The plaintiffs will seek punitive damages as a result of the nature of the conduct of the Costa Concordia’s officers and staff, which demonstrated a reckless disregard for human life and property,” the statement from an attorney for the plaintiffs said.
“These passengers were left terrified and unguided in a desperate situation while the captain was already safely in a lifeboat with his clothes dry and his luggage in hand,” the AFP reported.
“Once the surviving passengers reached land, their ordeal was far from over, because Carnival failed to offer them the barest courtesies and assistance, leaving them in a country where most were aliens, with only the clothes on their back, no money and no passports.”
The Costa Concordia cruise ship ran aground off the Italian island of Giglio with 4,229 people on board. Thirty-two people are believed dead, though the bodies of 15 people have not been found.
Captain of the ship, Francesco Schettino is under house arrest, and is facing charges of manslaughter, and abandoning the ship.