CRUISE INDUSTRY DENTED BY DISASTER

THE spectacular cruise liner accident off the coast of Italy is not just a disaster for the ship’s owners and victims of the tragedy, but could inflict wider damage as potential passengers worry about safety. The Costa Concordia, with more than 4,000 people on board, flipped on its side after hitting a rock on Friday night close to Giglio, off Italy’s west coast. Last night the death toll stood at five. The 114,500-tonne ship was operated by Costa Crociere, a unit of Carnival, the world’s largest cruise company. It was one of the group’s main assets in the lucrative European market.