Costa Concordia's Dark Side Revealed

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Frozen in time at the Costa Concordia's crippled starboard side, a couple of rusty lounge chairs are tidily lined up on the balcony, a simple aluminum chair stands in a corner, while green lamps hang over the cruise ship's deck.

By some strange fortuity, despite the collision on the rocks of Giglio on January 13, the capsizing of the ship, 20 months underwater and a 65-degree rotation, the chairs and lamps amazingly stand in their original positions, as if waiting for guests to enjoy some sunshine or a coffee at the one of the cruise ship's shining bars.

But all around, it's hell.

The inside story of the daunting salvage operation will be revealed on Discovery Channel's "Raising Concordia," Friday September 20 at at 10/9c.

Costa Concordia's Dark Side Revealed in Photos

Off the coast of North Carolina, marine archaeologists are surveying three sunken German U-Boats.
A side-scan sonar image of U-550. Credit: GK

Stacked up furniture sticks out of broken windows and doors. Crumpled metal and grime dominate the once glorious cruise liner, while piles of chairs form a twisted mass of rusty metal. A brightly colored small table hangs from a window, while doors on the buckled lower decks slowly open and close as water flows through them.

Welcome to the dark side of the Concordia.

The 114,500-ton ship struck a rock and capsized on Jan. 13, 2012, after captain Francesco Schettino allegedly drove it on an unauthorized route too close to shore, ripping a huge gash in the hull. There are still no signs of the bodies of two people among the 32 dead who have been missing since the ship tumbled onto its side.

On September 17, during a complex, unprecedented 19-hour operation, the Concordia was pulled upright.

Concordia Pulled Upright: Photos

Seen from a distance, the cruise liner appears as a half-white, half-brown ship rising from pristine blue waters.

"It's a totally new sight. Before it looked like a white, giant, broken toy left on the shore, now it looks like a grim, haunting wreck coming back from the past," Daniela Brizzi, a resident of Giglio Porto, told Discovery News.

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