Captain Schettino’s Conduct

17 Jan

The Costa Contadora story just gets farcically worse with every news cycle.

Is Capt. Schettino hiding under a blanket in this crowd of survivors?

If you want to know how NOT to conduct yourself as a Captain after ordering passengers and crew to

abandon ship, and hustling off yourself, audio recordings of Captain Schettino–as authorities try to save lives and complete the evacuation–are a perfect example of what not to do and say. 

Sample:

A few minutes later, the port authority commander again asked Schettino where he is. Schettino, who was still on land, didn’t reply. “Go on board and coordinate the rescue operation from there,” yells De Falco. “Are you refusing?”

Schettino then pleads that he is not refusing, but does not return to his ship. The port authority commander is now audibly angry. “You get on board. This is an order!” De Falco says. “You cannot make any other decisions. You have declared you are abandoning your ship. Now I’m in charge. You get on board now. Is that clear?”

A few seconds later the frustrated port authority commander adds, “There are already bodies, Schettino.” Schettino replies, “How many dead are there?”

“You are supposed to be the one telling me how many there are. Christ.”

Schettino then says, “Are you aware that it is dark here and we cannot see anything?"

There's a lot more like that, but it's hard to read the whole thing without thinking you are reading a Saturday Night Live skit or a Monty Python bit.

Who can Schettino be compared to? Maybe J. Bruce Ismay, chairman of the White Star Line, who abandoned the Titanic and was the highest ranking White Star survivor (though Capt. Smith, to his credit, stayed on the bridge).

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