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Costa offers $14,460 per person for Italy cruise ship disaster

January 27, 2012 12:00:00 AM PST
Passengers on board a cruise ship that ran aground and capsized in Italy are being offered $14,460 apiece for their trouble.

Costa Crociere SpA, the company that operates the cruise line, said the money is to compensate them for their lost baggage and psychological trauma.

The deal was announced after negotiations between the company and consumer groups that say they are representing 3,206 passengers from 61 countries who suffered no physical harm when the Costa Concordia cruise ship hit a reef on Jan. 13.

The company will also reimburse passengers the full costs of their cruise, travel expenses and medical expenses.

Passengers can deny the settlement and still pursue legal action.

The deal does not apply to the hundreds of crew on the ship, many of whom have lost their jobs, the roughly 100 people who were injured in the chaotic evacuation or the families who lost loved ones.

Sixteen bodies have been recovered and another 16 people who were on board are missing and presumed dead.

Meantime, crews are getting ready to work on extracting about 500,000 tons of heavy fuel oil before it leaks into the waters. The pumping operation is expected to last nearly a month.

See photos of the cruise ship Costa Concordia off the coast of Italy.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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