Workers Begin Removing Fuel From Italian Shipwreck

Posted February 12th, 2012 at 7:40 pm (UTC-5)
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Salvage workers have begun pumping fuel from the cruise ship that ran aground last month off the coast of Italy.

Italian officials say it will take 28 consecutive days of pumping to empty the 15 fuel tanks.

Since the Costa Concordia ran aground on January 13, there have been fears of fuel leaks and resulting contamination of the pristine waters off the Tuscan island of Giglio.

At least 17 people died when the cruise ship struck rocks and capsized. Fifteen other people are still missing from the partially submerged ship.

The ship was carrying 4,229 passengers and crew.

Authorities say Captain Francesco Schettino steered the ship too close to the shore and onto the rocks. He is under house arrest on multiple charges, including manslaughter and abandoning ship before those who were on board had gotten off safely.