Italian report says Norman Atlantic sprinkler system was not working

The sprinkler system on board the Norman Atlantic ferry which caught fire while traveling between Greece and Italy at the end of last year was not working, according to a report in Italian newspaper Il Fatto Quotidiano.

Captain Argilio Giacomazzi is said to have been informed at 4.40 a.m. on December 29, soon after the fire broke out, that the sprinklers were spewing out smoke rather than water.

Eleven people died on board the ferry, which had been chartered by ANEK Lines, while another 18 are still unaccounted for.

Judicial authorities at the Italian port of Bari, where the destroyed ship has been docked since February 14, recently decided to extend their investigation into the deadly fire by another six months.