NGC airs first U.S. documentary detailing Costa Concordia disaster

National Geographic Channel (NGC) has announced that this Sunday it will be premiering the first U.S. documentary to detail, moment-by-moment, the disaster that took place on Jan. 13 aboard the Italian cruise ship Costa Concordia when the vessel detoured off course, hit some rocks and began to sink.

Italian Cruise Ship Disaster: The Untold Stories is told primarily through the eyes of those who experienced it. The documentary weaves together in-depth stories from passengers and staff on board as well as Coast Guard rescuers with stunning home video, some never before seen on U.S. television, and CGI to reconstruct the sinking of the ship as it happened.

Eighteen-year-old Amanda Warrick, a Massachusetts resident, was aboard the ship, traveling with her older brothers, and in the special, recalls the immediate impact of the ship hitting the rocks.

“At first there was a tilt and a shake of the ship,” she says. “That’s when tables and glasses started crashing. I was kind of in shock. I remember immediately standing up and looking at my brothers. I was just kind of speechless and silent.”

Moments later, there was a blackout. Twenty-one-year-old Kristy Cheslyn-Nuttal, a singer on the ship, describes how the captain’s deck notified them of an “electrical failure” that they were “working to restore.”

“My friends got their laptops and we all sat in the corridor watching films,” Kristy laughs. “We were unaware completely.”

From panicked stories as passengers and crew describe the scramble to get on the last remaining lifeboats, to questions of why the passengers weren’t warned earlier, and could the disaster have been prevented, to the outrage over the captain abandoning his ship, Italian Cruise Ship Disaster covers the key initial elements of this still-developing — and raw — story.

Italian Cruise Ship Disaster: The Untold Stories premieres Feb. 12 at 7pm ET/PT on National Geographic Channel, and encores Feb. 13 at 10pm ET/PT.


Photo credit: Dragonfly Film & TV Productions Ltd.