Investigators Locate Data Recorder On Sunken Cruise Ship

Friday, April 13th 2007, 7:17 am
By: News On 6

ATHENS, Greece (AP) _ Investigators located the data recorder on the sunken Sea Diamond cruise ship using a remote-controlled undersea probe, authorities said Friday.

The Merchant Marine Ministry said efforts would be made to try and recover the recorder _ and reveal details of the April 5 incident off the Greek holiday island of Santorini.

Two French tourists remain missing after the Greek cruise ship struck rocks and sank. Nearly 1,600 people, including hundreds of Americans, were rescued.

Most of the sunken hull is more than 325 feet below the surface.

The ship struck well-marked rocks, officials at Cypriot-based company that owned the ship said earlier this week.

``The incident was a result of human error _ but so are 75 percent of all accidents at sea,'' said Giorgos Koubenis, a representative of Cypriot-based Louis Cruise Lines.

State-run NET television said a remote-controlled vessel would try to recover the data recorder, and that divers would be used if that effort fails.

The probes, operated by the Hellenic Center for Marine Research, are also being used to try and locate the missing French passengers and stop a fuel leak from the sunken ship.

More than 120 tons of fuel and diesel _ about a quarter of the total amount _ have leaked into the island's sea-filled volcanic crater where the Sea Diamond sank.