New evidence regarding the circumstances surrounding a fire that broke out on the Norman Atlantic ferry on December 28, 2014, which led to the deaths of 11 people, has emerged following a preliminary report compiled by Italy’s Transport Ministry, Italian newspaper Il Fatto Quotidiano reported on Monday. Eighteen people remain missing one year on.
According to the newspaper, there is evidence suggesting that the wrong fire extinguishing system was activated after the blaze started on the passenger ferry’s car deck. That would also explain why the ship’s captain, Argilio Giacomazzi, was heard asking seven times in the space of a few minutes whether or not the fire extinguishing system was operating after the blaze was detected, the newspaper said.
Questions remain regarding why the vessel was towed to an Italian port, as opposed to nearby Albania. The daily also noted that a crew member had testified that the trucks in the garage were parked very close to each other.
Leased by ANEK Lines, the vessel was heading from the western Greek port of Patra to Ancona in Italy via Igoumenitsa, northwestern Greece. Over 500 passengers and crew members were aboard when the blaze began in the Adriatic, amid high winds and rain.
The investigation into the incident has been extended for another six months.